Lecturer on Law and Associate Director of Armed Conflict and Civilian Protection, International Human Rights Clinic, Harvard Law School, Harvard University

Bonnie Docherty is a Lecturer on Law and Associate Director of Armed Conflict and Civilian Protection at the International Human Rights Clinic at Harvard Law School. She is also a Senior Researcher in the Arms Division of Human Rights Watch. She is the author of the new report, "Heed the Call: A Moral and Legal Imperative to Ban Killer Robots."

She is an expert on disarmament and international humanitarian law, particularly involving civilian protection during armed conflict. In recent years, she has authored several seminal reports in support of civil society’s campaign to ban fully autonomous weapons, also known as “killer robots.”

Docherty has worked in the field of humanitarian disarmament since 2001 as lawyer, field researcher, and scholar. In addition to working on fully autonomous weapons, she played a key role in the negotiations of the 2017 Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, successfully advocating for specific provisions and providing legal advice to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), the civil society coalition that received the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize. She has been a global leader in efforts to strengthen international law on incendiary weapons and the use of explosive weapons in populated areas. Docherty's on-site investigations of cluster munition use helped galvanize international opposition to the cluster munitions, and she participated in the negotiations of the 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions that resulted. Docherty received her A.B. from Harvard University and her J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Experience

  • 2005–present
    Lecturer on Law and Associate Director of Armed Conflict and Civilian Protection, International Human Rights Clinic, Harvard Law School