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The Law of Armed Conflict and Military Operations (LACMO) is an autonomous research group within the Amsterdam Center for International Law that investigates the role of law, in particular public international law, in relation to a wide variety of military operations and security challenges.

The programme

LACMO's research is organized around a number of broad themes, each of which contains a number of projects. These are:

  • Legal bases for the use of force and military operations: old law and new challenges;
  • International humanitarian law and human rights law in contemporary armed conflicts: challenges, dilemmas and prospects;
  • The development of international military operational law as a new sub discipline within public international law and its relationship with and contribution to public international law;
  • Cyber warfare and cyber security; applying international law to new security challenges from a military perspective
  • New technologies and armed conflict: weapons of the future and the law of the past.

The primary  aim of the research group and focus of the research programme is to investigate the role of law, in particular public international law, in relation to a wide variety of military operations and security challenges. It is aimed at exploring and explaining the legal bases and regimes which are applicable to such operations in a changing environment and providing legal guidance on how these relate to each other and influence and regulate how military operations are planned and conducted.

LACMO Research Network

The cooperation with other universities and defence colleges is organized around a research consortium operating under the name of ‘LACMO Research Network’. The research network is based upon a framework agreement for organizing joint projects, conducting  cooperative research , joint supervision of PhD projects and exchange of personnel. As of October 2022 it comprised more than 20 research groups from as many universities and military staff colleges and academies in Europe, North America and Asia and the Pacific. 

LACMO news & events

Find out about the latest news and upcoming events on LACMO's website (external site).


The Research Programme “Role of Law in Armed Conflict and Peace Operations” (LACPO)  was initiated in 2007 as an independent programme within the Amsterdam Center for International Law (ACIL). It was prolonged in 2010 and again in 2013 after two  successive favourable external evaluations, in each case for  periods of three years. In 2017, a new period commenced in which ACIL decided to no longer position its research inside a programme, but rather to organize its research around a series of projects. This along with other changes led to the necessity of  restating and where necessary adapting the LACPO Programme to the new ACIL organizational structure and to new research opportunities.

Research Objectives, Activities and Goals 2017-2021

Staff involved

Prof. dr. M.C. (Marten) Zwanenburg


Prof. T.D. (Terry) Gill


Prof. dr. P.A.L. (Paul) Ducheine


External Junior Researchers

  1. Ardan Folwaij
    The legality of military human performance in the military domain
  2. Raïssa van den Essen
    Targeting in Cyber Warfare: The Triangular Relation Between the Notions of ‘Attack’ (49 API), ‘Military Objectives’ (52 API) and ‘Collateral Damage’ (57 API) in Cyber Targeting Decisions
  3. Bas van Hoek
    Legal Oversight on the Use of Force in Military Operations; Dutch legal oversight procedures reviewed.
  4. Klaudia Klonowska
    Intra-actions of Human Judgment, AI Decision-Support Technologies, and International Law in Contemporary Military Decision-Making
  5. Jonathan Kwik
    Legal obligations attached to the incorporation of artificial intelligence into weapon systems under international humanitarian law
  6. Mark Roorda
    Unmanned weapon systems in military operations. An interdisciplinary normative framework: combining military operational, legal and ethical aspects in bounding the use of unmanned weapon systems in the targeting process
  7. Karoly Vegh
    The applicability of international human rights law for the conduct of extraterritorial information and influence operations by states
  8. Taylor Woodcock
    (Un)Lawful delegation of military conduct to artificial intelligence enabled technologies and a framework for compliance with international law