IMPACTUM is an ambitious research project that aims to fill the gaps in the existing policy analysis and academic literature on UMs. By moving beyond the traditional legal research questions and method, this project aims to provide new knowledge on detainee-focused UMs and to examine emerging issues, which are yet to be addressed in academia. Informed by the ideas of legal constructivism (Evans 2004; Garcia 2014) and transformative constitutionalism (Bogdandy et al 2010/2014/2017/ 2019) IMPACTUM proposes an interdisciplinary approach rooted in legal studies, political science, and criminology. This will enable us to establish a deeper understanding of these issues, in both academic and practical terms. IMPACTUM will consider the institutional, political and legal contexts in which UMs are enforced; examine how UMs are applied on the ground; discuss their strengths and limitations; and analyse any wider learning effects on states and the HRs bodies themselves. In so doing, the research project will assess the impacts of UMs on four levels: 1) on detainees; 2) on the legal, institutional, political systems; 3) on states and other domestic actors; and 4) on the HRs bodies.
The team will develop the normative impact framework that can be used to assess how to conceptualise UMs in ways that provides a deeper theoretical analysis and the greatest protection in practice. IMPACTUM will thus present new knowledge on emerging issues with UMs that are currently unaddressed in academia and in practice.