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Hugo Slim

Steering Committee Member and Senior Research Fellow

Hugo Slim specializes in the study of ethics, war and humanitarian aid and is leading ELAC’s Red Cross funded research on the 21st century battlefield and humanitarian response. This is his second fellowship at ELAC where he previously led research on humanitarian ethics from 2012-2015 and was also part of the team working on the Individualisation of Warfare funded by the European Research Council.

Hugo’s career has combined academia, frontline humanitarian operations and policymaking. From 2015 and 2020, he was Head of Policy and Humanitarian Diplomacy at the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Geneva, where he led humanitarian policymaking and diplomacy, and also coordinated the ICRC’s delegation to the United Nations in New York.

Hugo did his BA in Theology at St John’s College, Oxford. He then worked with Save the Children for five years and with the United Nations before joining Oxford Brookes University to co-lead their award-winning MSc in Development and Humanitarian Practice between 1994 and 2003. He received his PhD by Published Work from Oxford Brookes. He was then Chief Scholar at the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue in Geneva from 2003 and 2007 and has also been on the Boards of Oxfam GB and the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD).

Hugo has published 30 refereed journal papers and 17 book chapters in ethics, humanitarianism and war studies. His latest books are Humanitarian Ethics: A Guide to the Morality of Aid in War and Disasters in 2015, which thinks through the applied ethics of humanitarian action, and Killing Civilians: Method, Madness and Morality in War in 2007, which analyses the causes and ethics of civilian suffering in war.