Researchers Contact Information

The Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights
Faculty of Law
P.O. BOX 4
Tel: +358 (0)29 4123140



Ville Kari

Ville Kari
Ville Kari is a postgraduate student of international law at the University of Helsinki and a Research Fellow at the Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights. He is a member of the research projects Intellectual History of International Law: Empire and Religion and Towards a Credible Ethics for Global Governance. He has held visiting fellowships at Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne and the Sciences Po École de Droit in Paris. He has also studied at Trinity College Dublin and Université de Poitiers.
Research Project: Erik Castrén and the Classical Doctrine of Civil War in International Law
How did international law relate to civil wars before the era of the League of Nations and the UN? Ville Kari is working to reconstruct the classical doctrine of civil war as it stood in its prime in the 19th century in order to better understand its underpinnings and shortcomings as its era came to a close. In the course of his work he has unearthed the forgotten realms of the laws of prize and booty and the intimate relationship of civil wars with the laws of belligerency and neutrality. Exploring the emergence and the demise of the classical doctrine of civil war along the age of sail, he wonders if the desuetude the doctrine was not merely an ideological choice but also a technological and economic inevitability.  
Through this inquiry, Mr. Kari hopes to shed new light on the cataclysmic demise of the classical doctrine among international legal scholars after the Spanish Civil War, when the teachings of elder scholars such as Erik Castrén (Civil War, 1966) rapidly gave way to new doctrines of humanitarian intervention and international peacekeeping operations.