Dr Cynthia Banham

UQ Research Fellow

School of Political Science and International Studies
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences



  • Doctor of Philosophy in Regulation, Justice and Diplomacy, 2015, The Australian National University (ANU)
  • Master of International Affairs with Distinction, 2004, ANU
  • Graduate Certificate in Journalism, 2000, University of Technology Sydney (UTS)
  • Graduate Certificate in Legal Practice, 1996, UTS
  • Bachelor of Arts/Law, 1994, Macquarie University

Cynthia Banham is a University of Queensland Post-Doctoral Fellow at the School of Political Science and International Studies. She is also a Visitor at the School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet) at the Australian National University.

Prior to joining UQ in 2016, she was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at RegNet’s Centre for International Governance and Justice. She completed her PhD (‘The Responses of Liberal Democracies to the Torture of Citizens: A Comparative Study’) at the ANU in 2014.

Cynthia is a former journalist, and was the foreign affairs and defence correspondent for the Sydney Morning Herald. She is also a lawyer, and previously practised as a solicitor in Sydney. She holds a Master of International Affairs from the ANU; a Graduate Certificate in Journalism and a Graduate Certificate in Legal Practice, both from the University of Technology Sydney; and a Bachelor of Arts/Law from Macquarie University.

Cynthia’s research interests lie in international human rights law and politics. Her current research project examines changing paths of political accountability in liberal democracies, with a particular focus on Australia’s offshore immigration detention policy.

Single Authored Books

Banham, C (2017) Liberal Democracies and the Torture of Their Citizens, Hart Publishing, Oxford.

Journal Articles

Banham, C, (forthcoming) “Alternative sites of accountability for torture: The publication of war on terror books as memory-justice” International Criminal Law Review (accepted for publication 18 November 2016)

Banham, C (2016) “Introduction: Special Section on Post 9/11 Perspectives on Torture” Asia-Pacific Journal on Human Rights and the Law 17(2): 6-11

Banham, C, (2016) “’Have you seen our shadow report?’ The power of human rights rituals: Torture and the Australian context” Australian Journal of Human Rights 22(1): 67-83

Banham, C, (2016) “Canada’s responses to the torture of citizens: Rights aberration or rights aspiration?” International Journal 71(3): 468-487

Banham, C, (2016) “The torture of citizens after 9.11: Liberal democracies, civil society and the domestic context” The International Journal of Human Rights 20(7): 914-934

Banham, C and B Goodin (2016), “Negotiating liberty: The use of political opportunities and civil society by Barbary State captives and Guantánamo Bay detainees” Australian Journal of Politics and History 62(2): 171-185

Banham, C (2013), “Legitimising war in a changing media landscape” Australian Journal of International Affairs 67(5): 605-620

Research Interests

  • Governance and Public Policy
  • International Relations


  • Doctor of Philophy


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Journal Article

Grants (Administered at UQ)