School of Social Sciences

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Postgraduate students research a broad range of topics across the School disciplines.

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Grace Boffey


Start date

Aug 2010

Submission date

Dec 2014

Grace Boffey


Assessing Complementarity: The ICC and Human Rights Policy in Colombia


The International Criminal Court began in July 2002 as a complementary court, designed to supplement and not simply replace national jurisdictions for the prosecution of grave international crimes. Scholarly literature suggests that the ICC has the potential to influence member states through positive complementarity. This thesis examines how the ICC’s complementary jurisdiction has functioned in the context of the Court’s preliminary examination in Colombia. The thesis draws on constructivist theories about norm dissemination to examine how the Court has affected state institutions, finding that a normative commitment to individual criminal accountability has not become deeply rooted in Colombia.

Why my research is important

The International Criminal Court was created in an effort to prevent and punish the worst crimes of concern to the international community. This research seeks to gauge this institution’s ability to influence domestic accountability practices for serious violations of human rights. In doing so, this research seeks to expand understanding about the impacts of the Court’s complementary jurisdiction.


  • Australian Postgraduate Award
  • University of Western Australia Safety Net Top Up
  • Completion Scholarship