Two academics from the School of Life Sciences have been chosen to attend a unique conference focussing on missing persons.

Dr Lucy Easthope and Gillian Fowler are in The Hague for the convention hosted by the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP).

Running from Tuesday, 29th October to Friday, 1st November The Missing: An Agenda for the Future will see experts from around the world discuss the issue of missing persons in all its facets.

Dr Easthope’s work focusses on mass fatalities planning, Disaster Victim Identification (DVI), community recovery and the care of survivors, the bereaved and the deceased after disaster. She also has a special interest in the care and return of personal effects.

Gillian is a Forensic Anthropologist with extensive experience working in post-conflict mass grave exhumations in Guatemala and more recently in Afghanistan.

Globally, there are millions of cases of missing and disappeared persons from armed conflict and human rights abuses. In addition, thousands of persons go missing every year as a result of disasters, migration, human trafficking, organised crime and other causes.

During the last two decades there has been a striking evolution in how the issue of the missing has been addressed, particularly following conflict and disasters.

The primary objective of the conference will be to review the dynamics of these advances and to explore how the issue of the missing should be addressed in the future.

As such, the conference will focus on global initiatives to account for persons who go missing for any and all involuntary reasons.