Leila is a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for Criminology, Faculty of Law, University of Oxford. Her postdoctoral research examines the interplay between terrorism, counter-terrorism and gender through a comparative case study of the United Kingdom, Kenya and Lebanon. Before starting her postdoctoral research, she worked as social stability adviser at UNDP in Lebanon. In this capacity she conceptualized, secured funding for and managed an Innovation Project ‘Speak your Mind to Prevent Conflict in Lebanon’, a whatsapp-based survey of Syrian refugees and Lebanese host communities to better understand local conflict dynamics and needs. In December 2016, she finished her doctoral thesis at the Faculty of Law, University of Oxford which explored the interpretation, use and practice of ‘justice for victims’ and ‘gender justice’ at the International Criminal Court. In addition to her research, Leila was the Convenor of the Oxford Transitional Justice Research (OTJR) network and worked for the International Criminal Court. Her teaching interests include international criminal justice, restorative justice, security and terrorism studies, gender studies and victimology.

For more information about her British Academy Postdoctoral Project, 'Mind the Gap: Exploring the Interplay between Gender, Terrorism and Counter-terrorism', please visit the project's website.

Leila can be reached under


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  • L Ullrich, 'Speak up via WhatsApp-Understanding the Life Worlds of Syrian refugees and host communities in Lebanon' (UNDP Research Report 2018)
    This report presents the findings of a WhatsApp survey about the life worlds of Syrian refugees and host communities conducted in Qaraoun (West Bekaa) in November 2017. The survey is at the core of an Innovation Project ‘Speak your Mind to Prevent Conflict in Lebanon’, funded by the UNDP innovation facility. The rationale of the WhatsApp survey was two-fold. First, to test the feasibility of using WhatsApp as an interactive survey tool which enhances local engagement of the crisis response in Lebanon. Second, to enrich our understanding of local conflict dynamics and the impact of assistance by collecting narrative data from both host community members and refugees.
  • L Ullrich, 'Beyond the ‘Global–Local Divide’: Local Intermediaries, Victims and the Justice Contestations of the International Criminal Court' (2016) 14 Journal of International Criminal Justice 543
    This article examines the role of a new category of actors in the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) justice process, so-called ‘local intermediaries’, who have largely been ignored in the research on the Court’s work. Intermediaries are diverse actors, from community leaders to grassroots organizations, who help the Court with evidence collection and victims’ engagement in situation countries. While much controversy surrounds the ICC’s engagement with intermediaries, there is a shared analytical framework for making sense of this relationship: the ‘global–local divide’. While many scholars advocate for a combination or even integration of ‘global’ and ‘local’ justice processes, the premise that the important misunderstandings and contestations in international criminal justice happen between the ‘global Court’ and ‘local communities’ is hardly put in doubt. Drawing on fieldwork at the ICC in The Hague, in Kenya and in Uganda, I will argue that the global v. local framework obscures more than it illuminates about the Court’s victims' engagement through intermediaries. By developing a theory of interactional justice, the article will show that some of the most important justice contestations happen within the ICC and in the field rather than between the ‘global Court’ and ‘local communities’. In fact, the ICC’s internal contradictions, rather than the much vaunted ‘mischievousness’ of intermediaries, explain much of the Court’s ambiguous victims’ engagement. Ultimately, the article aims to close the empirical gap in research on ICC intermediaries by releasing them from the analytical confines of the global v. local conceptual framework.
  • L Ullrich, 'Doing Gender Justice in Northern Uganda' (2015) Open Democracy
    The efforts of NGOs and international organisations to gradually nudge post-war northern Uganda towards a ‘gender just society’ ignore the fact that gender equality also has real enemies.
  • L Ullrich, Transitional Justice Methods Manual (swisspeace 2013)


Research programmes

Research projects

Research Interests

Transitional Justice, International Criminal Justice, Criminology, Victimology, Human Rights, International Relations, Law and Society, Global Civil Society

Research projects