Professor Rachel Julian, Professor

Professor Rachel Julian


Professor Rachel Julian is an internationally recognised researcher working on Unarmed Civilian Peacekeeping/Protection and the way we recognise the lives and voices of those affected by violence and crisis. Her work challenges the widespread acceptance of violence in International Relations and the assumption that peacekeeping requires soldiers.

In working with community partners in South East Asia and East Africa, Rachel has explored how civilians protect one another from violence, increase their capacity and agency to act, the voices of survivors in influencing policy and how a nonviolent feminist analysis generates creative approaches in the midst of complex challenges.

Rachel's interdisciplinary research uses arts, creative and technology methods and is widely published and funded through research grants from AHRC-UKRI, Global Challenges Research Fund, British Academy and United States Institute for Peace. She is working in three international networks and regularly presents her research at international conferences. She has been invited as an expert to speak at a UN meeting and German Parliament sub committee and is always interested in new and exciting projects and methods.

Rachel teaches undergraduate and postgraduate in nonviolent resistance, civilian protection and developing and managing projects. She supervises PhD students researching peace, nonviolence, conflict and protection.

Current Teaching

  • Civilian Protection
  • Nonviolent Resistance
  • Developing and Managing Projects

Research Interests

Professor Julian has published substantial evidence that unarmed civilians can de-escalate violence without using weapons. International Relations is underpinned by theories that assume violence works in creating peace and that armed soldiers are necessary for managing violence and peacekeeping. Drawing on data from practice, she demonstrates the power of civilian action in the midst of armed conflict.

Working with partners in Myanmar, Rachel has explored how arts and lived experience reveal more about the reality of armed conflict and the way that women work in their communities to understand inequality in broad terms. In Mindanao, Philippines, she has enabled the collection of civilian views on their roles and tasks in protecting other civilians and community early warning.

In a network across East Africa, Rachel’s work includes building capacity in using participatory methodologies in community-led research and involving the voices and narratives of human trafficking survivors in influencing policy.

Rachel’s genuinely collaborative research is building capacity and changing lives through exploring the inter-relationship between feminism, peace, conflict, resistance, culture and power in a range of partnerships.

Professor Rachel Julian, Professor
Download CV

Ask Me About

  1. Community
  2. Culture
  3. Feminism
  4. Governance
  5. Peace
  6. Politics
  7. Security

Selected Outputs

  • Why unarmed civilian protection is the best path to sustainable peace

    Waging Nonviolence - online

    “Unarmed civilian protection challenges the widespread assumption that ‘where there is violence we need soldiers,’ or that armed actors will only yield to violent threat,” said Rachel Julian, director of the Centre for Applied Social Research at Leeds-Beckett University, during a UN event in May. Hosted by the permanent missions of Uruguay and Australia to the UN, the event offered inspiring success stories and provided persuasive evidence that unarmed civilian protection works.

    View more
  • Highlighting A Fellow Advocate And NP Supporter, Dr. Rachel Julian

    Nonviolent Peaceforce - online

    As a teenager, Dr. Rachel Julian campaigned for nuclear disarmament. Now, she is Senior Lecturer in peace studies at Leeds Beckett University in England and on the board of Nonviolent Peaceforce. Like you, she advocates for Unarmed Civilian Protection.

    View more
  • Julian R; Furnari E; Bliesemann de Guevara B (2020) Unarmed Civilian Peacekeeping. In: Springer Handbook on Positive Peace.

  • Julian R (2009) Peacekeeping with Nonviolence: Protection Strategies for Sustainable Peace. In: Schweitzer C ed. Civilian Peacekeeping: A Barely Tapped Resource. Belm-Vehrte: Sozio-Publishing,

  • Julian R (In press) Civilian Peacekeeping Today. In: Gandhi Symposium - Symposium zur aktiven Gewaltfreiheit aus Anlass von Gandhis 150, 27 September 2019 - 29 September 2019, Linz, Austria.

  • Julian R (In press) Civilian Peacekeeping Today. In: Gandhi Symposium - Symposium zur aktiven Gewaltfreiheit aus Anlass von Gandhis 150, 27 September 2019 - 29 September 2019, Linz, Austria.

  • Julian R (2013) Competition or collaboration: how stakeholder expectations influence the results demonstrated in areas affected by violent conflict. In: Building an evidence base for humanitarian action: methodologies and approaches for the collection and analysis of information and evidence in humanitarian action, New York/Online.

  • Julian R (2012) Who Built the Peace? Comparing evaluation methods in peacebuilding and conflict transformation. In: Conflict Research Society Annual Conference 2012, Coventry.

  • Julian R (2011) Who built the peace? Applying systemic evaluation methods to peacebuilding and conflict transformation. In: Systemic Approaches in Evaluation, Frankfurt.

  • Julian R (2010) Competition or collaboration: how stakeholder expectations influence the results demonstrated in conflict transformation. In: Peace and Conflict: an international interdisciplinary conference, Bradford.

  • Julian R; Webb D (2010) Overcoming the challenge of causality and attribution in conflict transformation projects in order to show results and evaluate outcomes. In: Institute of Mathematics Conference: Analysing Conflict Transformation..

  • Julian R (2009) The roles of civilians: unarmed protection can create space for local peacebuilding. In: Conflict and Complexity II: Theory, Evidence and Practice” Conflict Research Society.

  • Julian R (2015) A Determination to Protect : The State of the Art.

  • Julian R (2023) People Protecting People Speak.

  • Julian R (2023) Rachel Julian Inaugural Lecture.

  • Julian R (2017) Raising Silent Voices.

  • Julian R (2014) Huddersfield Quakers Annual Peace Lecture.

  • Julian R; Delsy R; Rexall K (2023) Civilian Ceasefire Monitoring in Mindanao.

  • Julian R; Furnari E; Schweitzer C (2016) Unarmed Civilian Peacekeeping : Effectively Protecting Civilians Without Threat of Violence.

  • Julian R (2022) Participatory Research Training Printed Workbooks.