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The subject of forensic specialist‘s work with human remains in the aftermath of conflict has remained largely unexplored within the existing literature. Drawing upon anthropological fieldwork conducted from 2009–10 in three mortuary facilities overseen by the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), this article analyses observations of and interviews with ICMP forensic specialists as a means of gaining insight into their experiences with the remains of people who went missing during the 1992–95 war in BiH. The article specifically focuses on how forensic specialists construct and maintain their professional identities within an emotionally charged situation. Through analysing forensic specialists encounters with human remains, it is argued that maintaining a professional identity requires ICMP forensic specialists to navigate between emotional attachment and engagement according to each situation.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal
An Interview with Caroline Abu Sa’Da, General Director of SOS MEDITERRANEE Suisse

’t necessarily join NGOs like MSF because they don’t have professional experience in humanitarian work. They specifically want to do something in Europe rather than going to Bangladesh or Syria or Iraq. It is really this idea of dealing with a European issue, in Europe, in a way that might bring about political change, without being embedded in a political party. This is a new type of political engagement and politics – different to that which inspired previous generations of humanitarian workers. SOS acknowledges the fact that dealing with migration today in

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Governing Precarity through Adaptive Design

, a new and optimistic, less direct but technologically updated humanitarianism has confidently stepped forth. More de-risked and requiring less professional expertise than the labour-intensive direct engagement of the past, it is a cheaper Western humanitarianism designed for connectivity rather than circulation. Often called humanitarian innovation ( ALNAP, 2009 ; Betts and Bloom, 2014 ), a feature of this new humanitarianism is its enthusiastic embrace of adaptive design ( Ramalingam et al ., 2014 ; HPG, 2018 ). Moreover, unlike autonomous

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs

one- to two-hour awareness-raising session on security for all volunteers leaving on mission during their departure preparation; and, most importantly, a kidnapping risk-management policy. That policy was designed and put in place after two expatriates were abducted in Somalia in the fall of 2008. It required identifying the kidnapping risk in each intervention zone; a specific briefing for people heading to high- and very high-risk areas about the risk and the means being used to reduce it; and confidentially obtaining and managing proof of identity. The idea was

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Humanitarianism in a Post-Liberal World Order

practicality prevents it). This is the same foundational commitment that animates human rights work. The humanist core to both of these forms of social practice is a similar kind of belief in the ultimate priority of moral claims made by human beings as human beings rather than as possessors of any markers of identity or citizenship. What differences exist between humanitarianism and human rights are largely sociological – the contextual specifics of the evolution of two different forms of social activism. I have argued elsewhere, for example, that the

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs