Dr Blake Lawrinson

Dr Blake Lawrinson


My academic background is in International Relations, broadly defined. I hold a BA (First-Class) and MA (Distinction) in International Relations, and a PhD in Politics and International Studies from the University of Leeds. My primary research interests are British foreign policy, human rights, humanitarian intervention, the Responsibility to Protect, and international order. Based on a combination of these research interests and the excellent expertise and scholarship on human protection, I decided to remain at the University of Leeds to carry out PhD research on the UK’s foreign policy commitment to human protection from mass violence and atrocity crimes, which was awarded in 2021. Further information is available via my LinkedIn profile.

Alongside my research, I am an ambassador for the European Centre for the Responsibility to Protect (ECR2P) at the University of Leeds. The ECR2P is dedicated to advancing the R2P through research, education, and policy dialogue.

Outside of academia, I have a keen interest in football and support my local club, Bradford City.

Student Education

I have vast teaching experience in the School of Politics and International Studies where I have delivered a range of classes since 2018. The modules I have taught include: International Politics (level 1), Approaches to Analysis (level 2), United States Politics (level 2), Security Studies (level 2), the Responsibility to Protect (level 3), British Foreign Policy (Level 3), Global Politics and Nuclear Weapons (Level 3) I have also acted as module leader for a taught postgraduate module on Diplomatic Practice (level 5). This is in addition to lecturing on human rights, R2P, diplomacy, and research methods.  

My approach to teaching places strong emphasis on critical thinking, analysis and reflection of key ideas, theories, and concepts, particularly through drawing on a range of interactive activities and case study materials. 

Research interests

My PhD research examined the UK’s commitment to human protection in a transitional foreign policy. A transitional foreign policy is defined according to changes in the UK’s world role, such as the implications of Brexit, its position within key multilateral international organisations (especially the UN), and strategic narratives of Global Britain. Within the context of these dynamics, what is the nature of the UK’s commitment to human protection in both rhetoric and action? What is the relationship between the UK’s changing world role and its commitment to human protection? What have been the key changes and continuities in the UK’s commitment to human protection over time? 

My research was awarded a Leeds Doctoral Scholarship (2017-2020).

Other research interests  

Beyond my PhD research, I have further interest in the following areas:

(1) Human Protection (responsibility to protect, protection of civilians, peacekeeping, preventing sexual violence in conflict)

(2) British Foreign Policy (especially on human protection, humanitarian intervention, trade, human rights, Global Britain, world role, UN Security Council, national interest)

(3) World order and a transitional world order (especially debates on ‘liberal’ world order)

(4) The UN Security Council (especially on thematic agendas and cases related to human protection: Mali, DRC, Libya, Syria, Myanmar, Yemen)

(5) Foreign policy analysis (especially the sub-field of foreign policy change)

I am happy to be contacted to discuss any of the above topics, including potential work collaborations and/or projects.

Professional Memberships

European Centre for the Responsibility to Protect

Research outputs: Articles

Lawrinson, B (2022) The limits of state-led norm entrepreneurship: The United Kingdom and the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative (PSVI). The British Journal of Politics and International Relations. https://doi.org/10.1177/13691481221079174

Research outputs: Book Reviews

Lawrinson, B (2020) Review: Responsibility to Protect and the Failures of the United Nations Security Council. R2P Student Journal. Available from: http://r2pstudentjournal.leeds.ac.uk/2020/07/11/book-review-responsibility-to-protect-and-the-failures-of-the-united-nations-security-council/ 

Lawrinson, B (2017) Review: Fundamentals of Genocide and Mass Atrocity Prevention. Civil Wars. 19(1), pp.108-111. Available from: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13698249.2017.1344181


  • BA International Relations - University of Leeds
  • MA International Relations - University of Leeds
  • PhD Politics and International Studies - University of Leeds

Research groups and institutes

  • European Centre for Responsibility to Protect