Many of BIICL's activities have a direct or indirect impact on policy and law, as well as more generally on the responses of others to our work. While this is primarily in regard to our research and publications, our events and training also provide wider public benefit in terms of information and education about contemporary issues. A snapshot of some key impacts from our work in 2017/18 is provided below.
Promoting international peace and security
In 2017/18, we undertook new research on international territorial disputes and the extent to which these are effectively regulated under international law. Our collaborative project on cultural heritage law entered its third, and final, year against the backdrop of a new UN resolution which regards attacks on cultural heritage on a similar level to other threats to international peace.
We made submissions on modern slavery issues to the UK and Australian governments. A long-running international humanitarian law project with the British Red Cross was also completed which saw the production of a handbook and a user-friendly field guide for media professionals reporting from conflict areas.
Engaging with business
This year saw the first Business Network-funded project on business and human rights issues which has produced valuable recommendations for companies working in environments where human rights may be under threat. We also continued to engage with the international business community through the Bingham Centre's Global Rule of Law Exchange Programme, supported by global partner, Jones Day. Other emerging areas of work included the development of FinTech regulation in emerging nations and potential challenges for the regulation of artificial intelligence and big data in the UK.
Proposing legal reform
The legal and rule of law consequences of Brexit have been a major focus for much of our UK-based work during the year. The Bingham Centre's involvement in the debate over withdrawal from the EU has helped parliamentarians to consider the rule of law implications and to generate informed debate about the issues raised. The Centre has also continued to provide an expert resource for the All Party Parliamentary Group for the Rule of Law. Other work has included research for the Ministry of Justice to inform decisions on the new Personal Injury Discount Rate. The Bingham Centre, in partnership with the University of Cape Town, has seen further dissemination of its work on the Cape Town Principles, which provide practical guidance for States on how to secure judicial independence.
Clarifying access to justice
Access to justice remains a critical issue for many people around the world. This year, we produced a new report on access to justice for people with disabilities, highlighting challenges and examples of international good practice. We also led two important studies on collective redress, analysing the extent to which the EU Recommendation on this topic has achieved its policy objectives including enhanced protection of consumers, more efficient justice systems, and an effective right to compensation. Other work included expert input into a review of the justice system in Kosovo and assistance with an international consultation on access to legal aid.
Building legal capacity and understanding
Our work in building legal capacity and understanding has included regular courses in public international law and the rule of law, as well as bespoke training for UK government officials and the publication of new materials for young people on international law and human rights. Our wide-ranging events programme continued to promote legal understanding, while new FAQ briefings and podcasts highlighted more of the legal challenges around Brexit. During the year, we also worked with the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) to produce a series of detailed papers on Brexit-related issues.
Read more about the impacts of our work in our latest Annual Impact Report