The Ferencz Initiative
The Ferencz International Justice Initiative is a project of the Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide that works to support those directly affected by atrocity crimes in their pursuit of justice and accountability. The work of the Ferencz Initiative complements the Simon-Skjodt Center’s efforts to prevent and deter crimes against humanity, genocide, and war crimes. These serious international crimes are the focus of our work due to their enormous impact on the lives of ordinary citizens and on peace and security around the world.
The Ferencz Initiative recognizes that justice and accountability for atrocity crimes can take many different forms in different contexts. It may require prosecuting those responsible in a court of law, but it may also involve efforts to discover the truth of what has happened, to preserve the memories of those affected, and ultimately to seek reconciliation. Understanding how best to achieve justice and accountability in different situations requires the direct input of affected individuals and communities.
The Ferencz Initiative supports research and education that place victims of atrocity at the center of justice and accountability efforts. We also promote policy initiatives that enhance international interest in the pursuit of justice for atrocity crimes and that connect local-level efforts to effective institutions, processes, and experts at the regional and international levels. Our work strengthens and empowers the victims of atrocity crimes to use the rule of law to make positive changes in their countries and it leverages the broader agenda of the Simon-Skjodt Center to help drive and inform national and international level policy debates around ending atrocity crimes and seeking justice for the victims.