Mechanisms of Atrocity Prevention Project


I-GMAP has taken the lead on re-envisioning the study of and reporting about national and other mechanisms of prevention. The Institute staff are working to assess research opportunities, tools and methods to expand upon the foundation that the Auschwitz Institute for the Prevention of Genocide and Mass Atrocities (AIPG) had developed from 2015 - 2018 in their reporting initiative on national mechanisms.

I-GMAP plans several changes. These will come through the establishment of the Mechanisms of Atrocity Prevention (MAP) Project. In lieu of focusing solely on national mechanisms, the MAP Project will also examine international and regional mechanisms, local or subnational mechanisms, as well as mechanisms that exist in civil society and the private sector. Including these other types of mechanisms in the scope of analysis offers the ability to compare, contrast, and evaluate the effectiveness of a variety of “whole-of-society” approaches to prevention.

I-GMAP envisions that in place of an annual booklet, the MAP project will produce a semi-annual policy paper series. This series will be created for general release and distribution throughout both the community of atrocity prevention practitioners in both state and civil society as well as interested academic researchers. The policy papers will focus on significant advances or setbacks of the national mechanisms when such developments warrant attention and reporting for the field.

I-GMAP’s new MAP Project will utilize dynamic research teams that will be spearheaded by its directors, affiliated faculty, and resident practitioners, alongside students in I-GMAP’s innovative academic programs. The MAP Project is initially envisioned to focus on particular countries, regions, and populations. For example, MAP projects teams may examine specific mechanisms for atrocity prevention related to indigenous communities, LGBTQI+ populations, or the ongoing international legal cases related to Myanmar and the Rohingya community. The resulting findings and recommendations will be disseminated via evidence-based policy briefs and other public-facing resources available on I-GMAP’s website and other university platforms.

I-GMAP looks forward to continuing our close collaboration with AIPG and other organizations dedicated to the prevention of mass atrocities in developing these policy briefs. If your organization would like to collaborate with I-GMAP, please be in contact with us and we will be happy to explore options for possible partnerships.

Publications from the Mechanisms of Atrocity Prevention Project

To view our publications from the Mechanisms of Atrocity Prevention Project, check out our collection on the Open Repository at Binghamton University (ORB).

View publications on the ORB

Project Themes

Current Projects:

Memory Sites | National Mechanisms for the Prevention of Mass Atrocities

Past Projects:

Gender Mainstreaming | Education Policy

Memory Sites

Contact: Prof. Kerry Whigham, Assistant Professor of Genocide and Mass Atrocity Prevention

Spaces of memory can contribute to atrocity prevention, though they do not always do so. Over the course of the semester, we will work as a team to develop a framework for analyzing if and how memory sites around the world contribute to atrocity prevention. Our findings will allow us to develop a set of guiding principles for incorporating an atrocity prevention mandate into the programming of memory sites. As transitional justice has grown as a field and as an international mandate in post-atrocity contexts over the past several decades, the memorialization of past atrocities through the construction of physical spaces of memory has increasingly been recognized as an essential aspect of this complex process. Often, these spaces of memory are touted not only as honoring past victims, but also as important tools for preventing future violence. Can a site of memory really play a role in preventing further acts of atrocity violence? If so, when and how are sites of memory a preventive force?

This is an extension of Dr. Whigham's externally funded project with the U.S. Department of State to collectively create a global database of memory sites. We then developed a questionnaire for these sites to measure the impact of their programming on atrocity prevention.

National Mechanisms for the Prevention of Mass Atrocities

Contact: I-GMAP Assistant Director

The I-GMAP Assistant Director (AD) leads the process of gathering, collating, and analyzing data on national mechanisms from a range of the Institute's international partners in both government and non-governmental organizations. The AD and members of the I-GMAP team, along with GMAP MS students work to better understand the capacity gaps of these emerging whole-of-government national mechanisms designed to help prevent mass atrocity crimes.

2020 Announcement: "AIPG to Integrate its National Mechanisms Project into New I-GMAP Mechanisms of Atrocity Prevention Policy Paper Series"

Past Projects

Gender Mainstreaming

The purpose of this brief is to provide recommendations on how to approach the possibilities of gender mainstreaming when gender identities are nonbinary. This brief also gives an overview of gender mainstreaming issues when it comes to downstream phases of atrocity prevention in places that have recently recovered from civil wars—the same civil wars which systematically committed violence against women and gender non-conforming people.

Access the brief on the Open Repository @ Binghamton University (ORB).

Education Policy

Expanding the Ranks of Atrocity Prevention Actors: Bringing a Prevention Lens to Professional Graduate Education

Starting in 2019, Professor Nadia Rubaii, I-GMAP co-director, worked with a team of graduate students to examine accreditation standards for professions and professional education for atrocity prevention potential. The core argument of Expanding the Ranks of Atrocity Prevention Actors is that professionals in all fields not only have the potential, but also the responsibility, and perhaps even an untapped desire, to contribute to prevention.

Access the report on the Open Repository @ Binghamton University (ORB).

Contact: Prof Max Pensky, I-GMAP Co-Director

Graduate course: GMAP 550, Mechanisms of Atrocity Prevention

GMAP 550, Mechanisms of Atrocity Prevention (MAP) Project. (1-3 credits per semester for a total of at least 3 credits). The Mechanisms for Atrocity Prevention (MAP) Project engages students in evaluating alternative approaches to promoting prevention, including but not limited to National Mechanisms. National Mechanisms for prevention are multi-agency and comprehensive systems within a country for detecting and responding to early warning signs, integrating proactive prevention strategies, and monitoring effectiveness. The Mechanisms of Atrocity Prevention program evaluates national, subnational, civil society and private sector mechanisms for prevention. Under the supervision of the I-GMAP Assistant Director, students will work as part of a team to participate in stages of the project underway at the time of enrollment. Students may complete the minimum 3 credits in a single semester or over time; given the annual cycle of the project, students are encouraged to enroll for multiple semesters, and may repeat the course for up to 6 credits. 

To register for GMAP 550 for Fall 2022, contact


For more information or if you would like to be in touch about a potential collaboration, contact our main office at