Date of Award

Spring 5-19-2015

Document Type

Undergraduate Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts in International Relations


Political Science & International Relations


Dustin Sharp


The International Criminal Court is at the forefront of the international transitional justice realm today. Despite its omnipresence, there is a seemingly ceaseless succession of arguments against the Court. As this disapproval abounds, it effectively obscures the specific issues at hand. The strain on the interaction between global and local levels of justice within the scope of the ICC arguably underscores the entire crisis situation. More specifically, there is a seemingly unbridgeable distance, both physical and cultural, between the entity of the ICC and the local communities it purportedly serves. This paper seeks to address the absence of local narratives and genuine two-way discussion by assessing the ICC’s current outreach and community engagement structure. Further, I explore the extent to which the ICC is paralyzed by its evaporating legitimacy and local perceptions of its inaccessibility, and ultimately make recommendations for its future. The Court’s community outreach program needs to be completely rebuilt to incorporate active listening and a long-tem dialogue between the two realms. Meaningful contact builds mutual trust, and without it, any attempt at progress or reconciliation will be feckless. Only when the ICC makes these constructive changes can it emerge from the current turbulence with a positive legacy.