Adam Roberts


Adam Roberts is an Honorary Professor at the Handa Centre for the Study of Terrorism and Political Violence. He is also Senior Research Fellow of the Centre for International Studies in Oxford University’s Department of Politics and International Relations and an Emeritus Fellow of Balliol College, Oxford. He was the Montague Burton Professor of International Relations at Oxford University from 1986 to the end of 2007.

His main research interests are in the fields of international security, international organizations, and international law (including the laws of war). He has also worked extensively on the role of civil resistance against dictatorial regimes and foreign rule,on terrorist campaigns in recent centuries, and on the history of thought about international relations. He is not able to act as supervisor for new graduate students.

He was President of the British Academy (2009–13). He is an Honorary Fellow of the London School of Economics & Political Science, and of St Antony’s College Oxford. He has been awarded Honorary Doctorates by King’s College London (2010), Aberdeen University (2012), and Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo (2012). He is a Foreign Honorary Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2011- ), and a Member of the American Philosophical Society (2013- ). He was a member of the Council of the International Institute for Strategic Studies, London (2002–8); of the UK Defence Academy Advisory Board (2003–15); and of the Board of Advisers of the Lieber Institute for Law and Land Warfare, at the United States Military Academy, West Point, September 2016– .


Selected Publications

(edited with Michael J. Willis, Rory McCarthy & Timothy Garton Ash), Civil Resistance in the Arab Spring: Triumphs and Disasters, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2016, xvi + 339 pp. ISBN 978–0–19–874902–8. Information on OUP websites for the USA and the rest of the world, incl. UK.

Adam Roberts (2014): Terrorism Research: Past, Present, and Future, Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, DOI: 10.1080/1057610X.2014.976011

(editor) Democracy, Sovereignty and Terror: Lakshman Kadirgamar on the Foundations of International Order, I.B. Tauris, London, 2012. ISBN 978 1 84885 307 2. Information at Google Books website.

‘The Long Peace Getting Longer’, Survival, London, vol. 54, no. 1, February-March 2012, pp. 175–83. (Review essay on Steven Pinker, The Better Angels of our Nature.)

(edited with Timothy Garton Ash) Civil Resistance and Power Politics: The Experience of Non-violent Action from Gandhi to the Present, paperback edition with a new foreword on the Arab Spring, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2011, xxv + 407 pp. (Hardback edition published in 2009.) ISBN 978–0–19–969145–6. Information at OUP Oxford website and OUP-USA website.

Foreword to Gene Sharp, Sharp’s Dictionary of Power and Struggle: Language of Civil Resistance in Conflicts, Oxford University Press, New York, 2011, pp. ix-x. ISBN 978–0–19–982989–7 (hardback); 978–0–19–982988–0 (paperback). Details at OUP Oxford website and OUP-USA website.

‘Refugees and Military Intervention’, in Alexander Betts and Gil Loescher (eds.), Refugees in International Relations, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2011, pp. 213–35. ISBN 978–0–19–958074–3 (hardback); 978–0–19–959562–4 (paperback). Details at OUP Oxford website.

‘The Civilian in Modern War’, in Hew Strachan and Sibylle Scheipers (ed.), The Changing Character of War, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2011, pp. 357–80. ISBN 978–0–19–959673–7 (hardback). Details at OUP Oxford website.

‘Detainees: Misfits in Peace and War’, in Sibylle Scheipers (ed.), Prisoners in War, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2010, pp. 263–80. ISBN 978–0–19–957757–6. Details at OUP Oxford website.

’Lives and Statistics: Are 90% of War Victims Civilians?’, Survival, London, vol. 52, no. 3, June-July 2010. Extracts etc available at IISS website.

‘An “Incredibly Swift Transition”: Reflections on the End of the Cold War’, in Melvyn Leffler and Odd Arne Westad (eds.), The Cambridge History of the Cold War, vol. III, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2010.

‘Doctrine and Reality in Afghanistan’, Survival, London, vol. 51, no. 1, February-March 2009. Extracts etc. available at IISS website.

‘The Equal Application of the Laws of War: A Principle under Pressure’, International Review of the Red Cross, Cambridge, no. 872, December 2008. Text available at ICRC website.

(with Dominik Zaum) Selective Security: War and the United Nations Security Council since 1945 (Adelphi Paper no. 395 of International Institute for Strategic Studies, London), Routledge, Abingdon, July 2008. Available on IISS website and Routledge website.

(edited with Vaughan Lowe, Jennifer Welsh and Dominik Zaum), The United Nations Security Council and War: The Evolution of Thought and Practice since 1945, Oxford University Press, June 2008. (Paperback edition April 2010.) Details available on OUP Oxford website and OUP-USA website.

‘Torture and Incompetence in the “War on Terror”’, Survival, London, vol. 49, no. 1, Spring 2007. 

‘The War on Terror in Historical Perspective’, Survival, London, vol. 47, no. 2, Summer 2005.