Dr. Daniela Lai

Lecturer in International Relations

About Dr. Lai...

Dr. Lai's research focuses on violence during conflict, and on the kind of justice and peace processes that are set up in the aftermath of conflict in order to deal with its consequences.

Dr Daniela Lai is particularly interested in socioeconomic forms of violence and in the political economy of international interventions and post-war transitions. Her research on socioeconomic violence and justice in Bosnia and Herzegovina resulted in a monograph published with Cambridge University Press in 2020.  Daniela has a particular interest in feminist approaches to the study of justice, peace and political economy. She also writes about methodology and methods in IR, research ethics and fieldwork.


Select project for brief description

This project explores how post-conflict transitional justice processes – that is, those processes dealing with the legacies of wartime violence – have addressed socioeconomic issues, including but not limited to reparations, compensation and restitution, redistributive measures and other remedies meant to address socioeconomic forms of violence. While recent research has provided evidence of their importance for conflict-affected communities, socioeconomic issues have traditionally been overlooked in transitional justice (TJ) processes often set up by international actors and states to deal with the legacies of wartime violence. In addition to the research already published on this theme, this project has recently led to a preliminary analysis of the initiative for the Regional Commission for the establishment of facts about war crimes and other serious violations of human rights committed during the Yugoslav wars (RECOM) in collaboration with the Post-Conflict Research Center (Sarajevo), to be further developed over the coming months.

This project addresses the role of corporate actors in conflict-related violence and in post-conflict justice processes that aim to redress the legacies of violence. Corporate actors – corporations, banks, financial institutions – are often accused of complicity in widespread violence against civilians and it is becoming more common for transitional justice mechanisms such as truth commissions to address their role and the socioeconomic context of the conflict. Taking a political economy approach, the project investigates how corporate actors not only play a part in violence but also shape the conditions under which justice is pursued in its aftermath, and thus shape in important ways the course of post-conflict justice processes.


Lai, Daniela (2021) ‘Stranci: Political Research and Language Learning in the Former Yugoslavia’, in Researching Yugoslavia and its Aftermath: Sources, Prejudices and Alternative Solutions, edited by Branislav Radeljić and Carlos González-Villa. Springer International (89-107).

Lai, Daniela (2020). Socioeconomic Justice: International Intervention and Transition in Post-War Bosnia and Herzegovina. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Lai, Daniela (2020). ‘What has justice got to do with it? Gender and the political economy of post-war Bosnia and Herzegovina’.  Review of International Political Economy 27(6): 1257-1279.

Lai, Daniela (2020). ‘Macroeconomic Interventions and the Politics of Postwar Justice.’ Politics & Gender, 16(3): 11-16.

Lai, Daniela (2020) ‘A different form of intervention: revisiting the role of researchers in Bosnia and Herzegovina’, in Fieldwork in question: Ethics, security and research practice in conflict and peace research, edited by Berit Bliesemann de Guevara and Morten Bøås. Bristol University Press (171-184).

Lai, Daniela (2019). ‘Practicing Solidarity: ‘Reconciliation’ and Bosnian Protest Movements’. Ethnopolitics 19(2): 168-187.

Lai, Daniela and Roccu, Roberto (2019). ‘Case studies and critical IR methodologies: The case for the extended case methodology.’ International Relations 33(1): 67-87.

Lai, Daniela and Bonora, Caterina (2019). ‘The transformative potential of post-war justice initiatives in Bosnia and Herzegovina’, in Transitional and Transformative Justice: Critical and International Perspectives, edited by Matthew Evans. London, Routledge (54-76).

Lai, Daniela. (2016). ‘Transitional justice and its discontents: socioeconomic justice in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the limits of international intervention.’ Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding 10(3): 361-381.