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Sara Palacios Arapiles

PGR Student (ESRC funded),

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Biography

Sara is a Doctoral Researcher at the School of Law at the University of Nottingham, where she is also a member of the Human Rights Law Centre's Forced Migration Unit. She is also Research Affiliate at the Refugee Law Initiative of the University of London and a member of the editorial board of their Working Paper Series. Sara qualified as a lawyer (barrister and solicitor) in 2015 and is a member of the Salamanca Bar Association (Spain).

During the course of her doctoral research, Sara has undertaken research visits to the League of Nations and United Nations Archives (Geneva) and the Brussels-based Think Tank Europe External Policy Advisors (EEPA). She has also participated as a speaker in various international conferences on forced migration, including at the Centre for Human Rights of the University of Pretoria (South Africa) and the Asian Research Center for Migration (ARCM) of Chulalongkorn University (Thailand). Aside from her doctoral studies, Sara has worked as a Research Associate at the University of Nottingham's Rights Lab, the world's largest group of modern slavery researchers. There, she conducted research for various large research projects, including the 2019 Walk Free's 'Measurement, Action, Freedom' Report - an independent assessment of government progress towards achieving UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 8.7.; and a United Nations University-funded project on multilateral and national policies needed to achieve SDG 8.7, in particular, in migration contexts.

Previously, Sara worked for United Nations Agencies and NGOs in the field of international refugee protection and human rights. She worked at the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in London, where she conducted a participatory study with newly recognised Eritrean refugees in the UK, and at the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) as a legal trainee of the Americas Office in Brussels. In a consultancy capacity, Sara has trained and undertaken research for asylum lawyers, NGOs, and refugee-led organisations.

Sara read Law (LLB/LLM) at the University of Salamanca in Spain and at Queen's University of Belfast (Erasmus Exchange Programme). She received her LLM in International and European Law from the Institute for European Studies (IES), Free University of Brussels (VUB) and her MA in Social Science Research (Socio-Legal Studies) from the University of Nottingham. She also holds a Certificate in International Human Rights Law from the Human Rights Law Centre, University of Nottingham.

Research Summary

Sara's PhD project assesses the interface between international refugee law and other branches of international law such as international human rights law, international humanitarian law and… read more

Recent Publications

  • PALACIOS ARAPILES, S., 2020. Unfolding Africa’s Impact on the Development of International Refugee Law. Journal of African Law. (In Press.)
  • PALACIOS ARAPILES, S., MADZIVA, R. and THONDHLANA, J., 2018. Placing the Refugee Camp at the Center of Trafficking and Modern Slavery Discourses: The Case Study of Tongogara Refugee Camp in Zimbabwe In: 'International Conference Migration and SDGs: ASEAN and Beyond', Asian Research Center for Migration (ARCM), Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok (Thailand).
  • THONDHLANA, J., MADZIVA, R. and PALACIOS ARAPILES, S., 2018. Gender and the Complexities of Mobility: The Case of Zimbabwean Women Survivors Rescued from Kuwait In: 'International Conference Migration and SDGs: ASEAN and Beyond', Asian Research Center for Migration (ARCM), Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok (Thailand).
  • PALACIOS ARAPILES, S. and MADZIVA, R., 2017. 'A dignified standard of living' for asylum-seekers? An analysis of the UK's labour market restrictions for asylum-seekers Refugee Review: Special Focus Labour. III, 65-81

Current Research

Sara's PhD project assesses the interface between international refugee law and other branches of international law such as international human rights law, international humanitarian law and international criminal law. She examines how these distinct areas of law are interpreted and applied (if at all) by asylum decision-makers in selected European countries in giving content to the refugee law concept of 'persecution' (in particular, within the context of Eritrean Military/National Service). During the course of her doctoral research, Sara has carried out fieldwork in Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark and Sweden. There, she interviewed asylum lawyers, NGO representatives, UNHCR staff as well as Eritrean refugees and asylum-seekers. Sara's research is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and supervised by Dr Daria Davitti and Professor Annamaria La Chimia.

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