RegNet PhD Scholar takes thesis expertise to Iraq

16 December 2016

Three and a half years in the making, Jacqueline Parry has taken her PhD,‘Transitional justice and displacement: lessons from Liberia and Afghanistan’ across the globe to assist displaced communities in Iraq.

Jacqueline’s legal background coupled with her work experience on assignments with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Indonesia, Jordan, Malawi and Afghanistan inspired deep intellectual enquiry into transitional justice and displacement. 

Along the way she was awarded with the Australian Research Council Laureate post-graduate scholarship and a prestigious Arthur C. Helton Fellowship micro-grant by the American Society of International Law.  

Today she takes her expertise to where it’s needed most.

Now based in Erbil, Jacqueline is working as a Program Advisor for the International Organization for Migration.

“I give advice on program design and implementation related primarily to IOM’s stabilization program. We work with displaced Iraqis and their host communities on infrastructure and livelihoods projects, with a key focus is on building social cohesion. The focus is on making development participatory, this is really important in post-conflict contexts,” said Jacqueline.

Jacqueline says the people she works with are a strong motivation.

“People are incredibly resilient. In Iraq, even when people are themselves affected by conflict, they are still willing to open their homes or communities to other displaced Iraqis, and are finding ways to rehabilitate or share limited resources.’ said Jacqueline.

Although Jacqueline came to the PhD with a wealth of experience, she found the academic process invaluable to the work she does today.

“What I found helpful is that I have a much stronger evidence basis in making policies. From experience in my PhD, I have case studies I can refer to. I know how to best access resources, which literature and academics to refer to,” said Jacqueline.

Jacqueline has returned to ANU for her graduation ceremony, and more than anything she said she feels relieved to have made it to the end and grateful for the support from her supervisor, colleagues and family.

“I started in 2012 it’s been a long process - it’s been on my mind constantly since I started. My supervisor Professor Hilary Charlesworth was extremely patient and supportive.’’

Jacqueline completed her PhD through the School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet).

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Updated:  11 January, 2015/Responsible Officer:  Dean, ANU College of Asia & the Pacific/Page Contact:  CAP Web Team