Sep 22 2015

Introducing Dr Janina Dill

Dr Janina Dill joined the LSE International Relations Department as Assistant Professor in September 2015.  She introduces herself here:

Dr Janina Dill

Dr Janina Dill

I am delighted to join the LSE’s IR department. My previous three jobs were all at the University of Oxford: a Junior Research Fellowship at the Faculty of Law and a Research Fellowship and a Departmental Lectureship at the Department of Politics and International Relations, where I also did my DPhil. In my previous roles I taught International Relations Theory, Normative Theory, International Law and International Humanitarian Law. I look forward to joining the LSE IR Department’s teachers of Political Theory (IR200) and IR Theory (IR436) this Michaelmas.

My research focuses on armed conflict, international relations theory, specifically constructivism, and on the role of international law as a means to maintain and extent the international order. I am particularly interested in the ethics and laws of war and their implications for individual and state security. I just finished a monograph about the definition of a legitimate target of attack in air warfare entitled Legitimate Targets? International Law, Social Construction and US Bombing. The book appeared with Cambridge University Press as part of the series Cambridge Studies in International Relations. Based on an empirical study of US air warfare between 1965 and 2003 – involving interviews with US military personnel and war veterans – the book strives to provide an answer to the pressing question whether international law is effective in regulating armed conflict. It also establishes mechanisms by which recourse to IL can make a difference in combat operations, thereby building and testing a constructivist theory of international law.

My current project is entitled ‘Dying as a side-effect: The meaning of proportionate collateral damage.’ I recently spent time in Israel and Afghanistan interviewing members of the military about their understanding of the principle of proportionality, which demands that belligerents weigh the anticipated military value of an attack against the harm it is expected to cause to civilians. I also recorded the views of civilian victims of attacks by military forces that generally distinguish between civilians and combatants, but accept (to varying degrees) foreseeable ‘collateral’ harm to civilians. In addition, I conducted two surveys based on large-n probability samples to explore people’s attitudes towards collateral damage in the US and the UK. Once I have settled into my new role at LSE I hope to start analyzing this, to me extremely exciting, data.


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