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Cambridge AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership - Student Profiles



I hold a BA in International Politics from King’s College London. My undergraduate thesis analysed political and economic factors affecting the likelihood of international energy conflict, based on a comparative analysis of Russia and Saudi Arabia. At KCL I completed an undergraduate research fellowship under the supervision of Dr Anna Gwiazda as part of her project “The Quality of Democracy in Central and Easter Europe”. In particular, I researched Bulgaria, Hungary and the Baltic States. 

I received my MPhil degree in International Relations and Politics from the University of Cambridge. My thesis examined a shift in the ICC approach to justice for gender-based crimes. I revisited the ‘norms lifecycle’ theory, which treats international organisations as passive ‘arenas’ for norms’ internalisation, and analysed the ICC as an independent actor pursuing self-motivated goals. 

Following my MPhil research, I developed an interest in examining the processes of defining, diffusing and internalising norms at the international level. My PhD research topic focuses on the norm of holding individuals criminally responsible for collective crimes and the extent to which internalising this norm excludes the possibilities of exploring alternative forms of responsibility for mass atrocities.

Other academic interests 

Gender-based crimes in international criminal law

International organisation

Comparative politics of Central and Eastern Europe

International energy politics 

Department: Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS)
Supervisor: Dr Adam Branch
College: Trinity Hall
AHRC subject area: Politics and International Studies (Diplomacy and International Relations), Law and Legal Studies
Title of thesis: The 'ICR Dilemma': Individual Criminal Responsibility for Collective Crimes at the ICC
 Liana  Minkova