Naomi Roht-Arriaza

Emerita Distinguished Professor of Law


Professor Naomi Roht-Arriaza grew up in New York and Latin America, including stints in Chile, Guatemala and Costa Rica. She earned a B.A. from UC Berkeley, a M.A. from the UC Berkeley Goldman School of Public Policy (formerly the Graduate School of Public Policy), and a J.D. from the UC Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall). Professor Roht-Arriaza has worked as an immigration paralegal, an organizer, and a teacher for a nonprofit focused on corporate accountability. After graduating from law school, she clerked for Judge James Browning of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco. During 1991 to 1992, Professor Roht-Arriaza was the first Riesenfeld Fellow in International Law and Organizations at UC Berkeley School of Law.

Professor Roht-Arriaza is the author of The Pinochet Effect: Transnational Justice in the Age of Human Rights (2005) and Impunity and Human Rights in International Law and Practice (1995), and coeditor of Transitional Justice in the Twenty-First Century: Beyond Truth versus Justice. She is a coauthor on The International Legal System: Cases and Materials (6th Ed.) with Mary Ellen O’Connell and Dick Scott (Foundation Press 2010). She continues to write on accountability, both state and corporate, for human rights violations as well as on other human rights, international criminal law and global environmental issues. In 2011 she was a Democracy Fellow at the U.S. Agency for International Development, and in 2012 she was a Senior Fulbright Scholar in Botswana.



The International Legal System: Cases and Materials (Foundation Press 7th ed. 2015) (with Mary Ellen O’Connell, Richard Scott & Daniel D Bradlow).

The International Legal System: Cases and Materials (Foundation Press 6th ed. 2010 & Documentary Supplement) (with Mary Ellen O’Connell & Richard F. Scott).

Transitional Justice in the Twenty–First Century: Beyond Truth Versus Justice (Cambridge University Press 2006) (with Javier Mariezcurrena).

The Pinochet Effect: Transnational Justice in the Age of Human Rights (University of Pennsylvania Press 2005).

Impunity and Human Rights Violations in International Law and Practice (Oxford University Press 1995).

Journal Articles

Gran Corrupción y Crímenes Atroces en Latinomérica (Grand Corruption and Atrocity Crimes in Latin America), 13 Jurídica Ibero 19 (2023). URL

Empowering Victims of Grand Corruption: an Emerging Trend, 37 Conn. J. Int’l L. 25 (2022). SSRN URL

Expanding the Frontiers of JusticeBerkeley Rev. Latin Am. Stud. 23 (Fall 2019). URL

Grand Corruption and the International Criminal Court in the “Venezuela Situation”, 17 J. Int’l Crim. Just. 672 (2019) (with Santiago Martinez). URL

Safeguarding Development: Risk Reduction in US Government Foreign Aid and Investment Facilitation Beyond the Current Patchwork, 24 Hastings Envtl. L.J. 311 (2018). FULLTEXT

Democracia y transparencia en el SIDH: una experiencia en marcha, 8 Rev. Direito & Práx. 1652 (2017). FULLTEXT

Capturing the Insights: Commonalities and Differences, 39 Hastings Int’l & Comp. L. Rev. 275 (2016). FULLTEXT

After Amnesties are Gone: Latin American National Courts and the New Contours of the Fight Against Impunity, 37 Hum. Rts. Q. 341 (2015). FULLTEXT SSRN

Editorial Note, 7 Int’l J. Transitional Just. 383 (2013) (Guest Editor).

Just a ‘Bubble’? Perspectives on the Enforcement of International Criminal Law by National Courts, 11 J. Int’l Crim. Just. 537 (2013). FULLTEXT

“First, Do No Harm”: Human Rights and Efforts to Combat Climate Change, 38 Ga. J. Int’l & Comp. L. 593 (2010). FULLTEXT

Prosecuting Core Crimes in the United States: Recent Changes and Prospects for 2010, 17 Willamette J. Int’l L. & Disp. Resol. 80 (2009). FULLTEXT

Making the State Do Justice: Transnational Prosecutions and International Support for Criminal Investigations in Post-Armed Conflict Guatemala, 9 Chi. J. Int’l L. 79 (2008). FULLTEXT

Social Reconstruction as a Local Process, 2 Int’l J. Transitional Just. 152 (2008) (with Laura Arriaza) (reprinted and expanded in Social Repair at the Local Level: The Case of Guatemala, in Transitional Justice From Below 143 (Kieran McEvoy & Laura McGregor eds., 2008)). FULLTEXT SSRN

Justice Should Be Done, but Where? The Relationship Between National and International Courts, 101 Am. Soc’y Int’l L. Proc. 289 (2007) (with Laura Dickinson, Christopher K. Hall, Paul Seils & Kimberly Theidon) (panel moderator). FULLTEXT

International Decisions—Guatemala Genocide Case, 100 Am. J. Int’l L 207 (2006). FULLTEXT

The Complex Architecture of International Justice, 10 Gonz. J. Int’l L. 38 (2006-2007). FULLTEXT

Reparations Decisions and Dilemmas, 27 Hastings Int’l & Comp. L. Rev. 157 (2004). FULLTEXT

Universal Jurisdiction: Steps Forward, Steps Back, 17 Leiden J. Int’l L. 375 (2004). FULLTEXT

From Country-Based to Corporate-Based Campaigns, 21 Berkeley J. Int’l L. 185 (2003). FULLTEXT

Las Amnistias En Perspectiva Comparada: Derecho Internacional y Poder Judicial, 9 C.D.J.P. 87 (2003).

Codes of Conduct: The Fiction of Corporate Self-Regulation, 58 Guild Prac. 38 (2001). FULLTEXT

The Pinochet Precedent and Universal Jurisdiction, 35 New Eng. L. Rev. 311 (2001). FULLTEXT

Institutions of International Justice, 52 J. Int’l Aff. 473 (1999).

The Developing Jurisprudence on Amnesty, 20 Hum. Rts. Q. 843 (1998) (with Lauren Gibson). FULLTEXT

The Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act and Human Rights Violations: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back?, 16 Berkeley J. Int’l L. 71 (1998). FULLTEXT

Truth Commissions and Amnesties in Latin America: The Second Generation, 92 Am. Soc’y Int’l L. Proc. 313 (1998). FULLTEXT

Truth Commissions as Part of a Social Process: Possible Guidelines, 14 NEP 279 (1998).

Addressing Human Rights Abuses: Truth Commissions and the Value of Amnesty, 19 Whittier L. Rev. 325 (1997) (with Peter A. Schey & Dinah L. Shelton). FULLTEXT

Compliance with Private Voluntary Agreements: The Example of the International Organization for Standardization’s ISO 14000, 29 Stud. Transnat’l Legal Pol’y 205 (1997). FULLTEXT

Compliance with Private Voluntary Agreements: The Example of the International Organization for Standardization’s ISO 14000, 29 Stud. Transnat’l Legal Pol’y 205 (1997). FULLTEXT

Developing Countries, Regional Organizations, and the ISO 14001 Environmental Management Standard, 9 Geo. Int’l Envtl. L. Rev. 583 (1997). FULLTEXT

Environmental Management Systems and Environmental Protection: Can ISO 14001 Be Useful Within the Context of APEC?, 6 J. Env’t & Dev. 292 (1997). FULLTEXT

International Human Rights Law in United States Courts: Professor Riesenfeld’s Contributions, 20 Hastings Int’l & Comp. L. Rev. 601 (1997). FULLTEXT

The Committee on the Regions and the Role of Regional Governments in the European Union, 20 Hastings Int’l & Comp. L. Rev. 413 (1997). FULLTEXT

Combating Impunity: Some Thoughts on the Way Forward, 59 L. & Contemp. Probs. 93 (Autumn 1996). FULLTEXT

Of Seeds and Shamans: The Appropriation of the Scientific and Technical Knowledge of Indigenous and Local Communities, 17 Mich. J. Int’l L. 919 (1996) (reprinted in Borrowed Power: Essays on Cultural Appropriation 255 (Bruce Ziff & Pratima V. Rao eds., Rutgers Univ. Press 1997)). FULLTEXT

The International Organization for Standardization and the Drafting of Private Environmental Standards, 90 Am. Soc’y Int’l L. Proc. 178 (1996). FULLTEXT

Private Voluntary Standard–Setting, the International Organization for Standardization, and International Environmental Lawmaking, 6 Y.B. Int’l Envtl. L. 107 (1995). FULLTEXT

Shifting the Point of Regulation: The International Organization for Standardization and Global Lawmaking on Trade and the Environment, 22 Ecology L.Q. 479 (1995). FULLTEXT

Truth as Justice: Investigatory Commissions in Latin America, 20 Law & Soc. Inquiry 79 (1995) (with Margaret Popkin). FULLTEXT

Precaution, Participation and the “Greening” of International Trade Law, 7 J. Envtl. L. & Litig. 57 (1992). FULLTEXT

Trade and Environment: An Environmentalist View, 86 Am. Soc’y Int’l L. Proc. 241 (1992). FULLTEXT

Chapters In Books

Natural Resources, Transitional States and Grand Corruption, in Research Handbook on International Law and Environmental Peacebuilding 127 (Daniëlla Dam & Britta Sjöstedt, eds., Elgar 2023). URL

Transitional Justice in Latin America: Achievements and Limitations, in The Oxford Handbook of Transitional Justice ____ (Meierhenrich, Hinton and Douglas eds., Oxford Univ. Press, forthcoming 2023). URL

Measures of Non-Repetition in Transitional Justice: The Missing Link?, in From Transitional to Transformative Justice 105 (Paul Gready & Simon Robins eds., Cambridge University Press 2019). CATALOG URL

Principle 1. General Obligations of States to Take Effective Action to Combat Impunity, in The United Nations Principles to Combat Impunity: A Commentary 47 (Frank Haldemann & Thomas Unger eds., Oxford Univ. Press 2018). CATALOG

Guatemala: Lessons for Transitional Justice, in Research Handbook on Transitional Justice 445 (Cheryl Lawther, Luke Moffett, and Dov Jacobs eds., Edward Elgar Pub. 2017). CATALOG

La dimensión económica, aspecto tardío de la justicia transicional, in El negocio del terrorismo de estado: los cómplices económicos de la dictadura uruguaya 0 (Juan Pablo Bohoslavsky ed., Siglo Veintiuno 2016).

Why Was the Economic Dimension Missing for So Long in Transitional Justice? An Exploratory Essay, in The Economic Accomplices to the Argentine Dictatorship 19 (Horacio Verbitsky & Juan Pablo Bohoslavsky eds., Cambridge Univ. Press 2015). URL

Reparations and Development, in Law in Transition: Human Rights, Development and Transitional Justice 189 (Peer Zumbansen & Ruth Buchanan eds., Hart Publishing 2014). CATALOG

¿Por Qué la Dimensión Económica Estuvo Ausente Tanto Tiempo en la Justicia Transicional? Un Ensayo Exploratorio, in Cuentas Pendientes: Los Cómplices Económicos de la Dictadura 31 (Juan Pablo Bohoslavsky & Horacio Verbitsky eds., Siglo Veintiuno 2013).

Reparations and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, in Justice and Economic Violence in Transition 109 (Dustin N. Sharp ed., Springer 2013) (Springer series in transitional justice). CATALOG

Reparations for Violations of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, in Justice and Economic Violence in Transition 109 (Dustin Sharp ed., Springer Books 2013).

De Facto and De Jure Amnesty Laws: The Central American Case, in Amnesty in the Age of Human Rights Accountability: Comparative and International Perspectives 182 (Francesca Lessa & Leigh A. Payne eds., Cambridge Univ. Press 2012) (with Emily Braid). CATALOG

Many Roads to Justice: Transnational Prosecutions and International Support for Criminal Investigations in Post-Conflict Guatemala, in The Role of Courts in Transitional Justice: Voices from Latin America and Spain 184 (Jessica Almqvist & Carlos Esposito eds., Routledge 2012) (with Almudena Bernabeu). CATALOG

Impunidade na América Latina: Tribunais Nacionais e Desafios Ainda Existentes, in A Anistia na Era da Responsabilização: O Brasil em Perspectiva Internacional e Comparada 140 (Comissão de Anistia, Ministério da Justiça 2011). URL

Many Roads to Justice: Transnational Prosecutions and International Support for Criminal Investigations in Post-Conflict Guatemala, in The Role of Courts in Transitional Justice: Voices from Latin America and Spain 184 (Jessica Almqvist & Carlos Esposito eds., Routledge 2011) (with Almudena Bernabeu). CATALOG

Universal Jurisdiction, in Research Handbook on International Criminal Law 359 (Bartram S. Brown ed., Edward Elgar 2011) (with Menaka Fernando). CATALOG

Foreword: The Importance of Latin American Jurisprudence in the Global Fight Against Impunity, in Digest of Latin American Jurisprudence on International Crimes ix (Due Process of Law Foundation 2010). URL

Human Rights and Strategic Peacebuilding: The Roles of Local, National, and International Actors, in Strategies of Peace: Transforming Conflict in a Violent World 231 (Daniel Philpott & Gerard F. Powers eds., Oxford Univ. Press 2010). CATALOG

Reparations in International Law and Practice, in 1 The Pursuit of International Criminal Justice: A World Study on Conflicts, Victimization and Post-Conflict Justice 655 (M. Cherif Bassiouni ed., Intersentia 2010). CATALOG

Weaving a Braid of Histories: Local Post-Armed Conflict Initiatives in Guatemala, in Localizing Transitional Justice: Interventions and Priorities after Mass Violence 205 (Rosalind Shaw, Lars Waldorf & Pierre Hazan eds., Stanford Univ. Press 2010) (with with Laura J. Arriaza).

A Complementary Relationship: Reparations and Development, in Transitional Justice and Development: Making Connections 170 (Pablo De Greiff & Roger Duthie eds., Social Science Research Council 2009) (with Katharine Orlovsky) (reprinted in Transitional Justice: Handbook for Latin America 487 (Félix Reátegui ed., Braz. Ministry of Justice & Int’l Ctr. for Transitional Justice 2011)). CATALOG

Criminal Prosecutions for Genocide in Guatemala: Advances and Obstacles in Transnational and Domestic Cases, in Quiet Genocide: Guatemala 1981-1983, at 135 (Etelle Higonnet ed., Transaction Publishers 2009).

Justice and Reconciliation After Conflict: The Case of Sierra Leone, in Human Rights & Conflict Resolution in Context: Colombia, Sierra Leone, & Northern Ireland 139 (Eileen F. Babbit & Ellen L. Lutz eds., Syracuse Univ. Press 2009).

Prosecutions of Heads of State in Latin America, in Prosecuting Heads of State 46 (Ellen L. Lutz & Caitlin Reigers eds., Cambridge Univ. Press 2009).

The Multiple Prosecutions of Augusto Pinochet, in Prosecuting Heads of State 77 (Ellen L. Lutz & Caitlin Reigers eds., Cambridge Univ. Press 2009).

Solidarity Rights (Development, Peace, Environment, Humanitarian Assistance,) in Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law (Rüdiger Wolfrum ed., Oxford Univ. Press 2008) (with Sara C. Aminzadeh). CATALOG

Guatemala, in Victims Unsilenced: The Inter-American Human Rights System and Transitional Justice in Latin America 7 (Katya Salazar & Thomas Antkowiak eds., Due Process of Law Foundation 2007) (with Marcie Mersky). URL

Private and Quasi-Private Standard Setting, in The Oxford Handbook of International Environmental Law 498 (Daniel Bodansky, Jutta Brueneé & Ellen Hey eds., Oxford Univ. Press 2007) (with Jason Morrison). CATALOG

The Pinochet Effect and the Spanish Contribution to Universal Jurisdiction, in International Prosecution of Human Rights Crimes 113 (Wolfgang Kaleck, Michael Ratner, Tobias Singelnstein, & Peter Weiss eds., Springer 2007). CATALOG

Victims, in 3 Encyclopedia of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity 1129 (Dinah Shelton ed., MacMillan Reference 2005). CATALOG

External Actors and Transitional Justice, in Dealing with the Past: Critical Issues, Lessons Learned, and Challenges for Swiss Policy 33 (Mô Bleeker Massard & Jonathan Sisson eds., Suisspeace 2004). URL

Reparations in the Aftermath of Repression and Mass Violence, in My Neighbor, My Enemy: Justice and Community in the Aftermath of Mass Atrocity 121 (Eric Stover & Harvey M. Weinstein eds., Cambridge University Press 2004). CATALOG

Of Catalysts and Cases: Transnational Prosecutions and Impunity in Latin America, in The Pinochet Case: Origins, Progress and Implications 191 (Madeleine Davis ed., Institute of Latin American Studies 2003). CATALOG

Civil Society in Processes of Accountability, in Post–Conflict Justice 97 (M. Cherif Bassiouni, ed., Transnational Publishers 2002). CATALOG

Dificultades y Desafios de las Comisiones de la Verdad Frente a la Tortura, la Reparacion y la Prevencion, in Memoria del Seminario Internacional Comisiones de la Verdad: Tortura, Reparacion y Prevencion (Centro de Derechos Humanos Miguel Agustín Pro Juárez 2002).

Promoting Environmental Human Rights Through Innovations in Mediation, in Human Rights and the Environment: Conflicts and Norms in a Globalizing World 259 (Lyuba Zarsky ed., Earthscan 2002). CATALOG

The International Organization for Standardization: Drafting the ISO 14000 Series, in The Greening of Trade Law: International Trade Organizations and Environmental Issues 251 (Richard H. Steinberg ed., Rowman & Littlefield 2002). CATALOG

The Role of International Actors in National Accountability Processes, in The Politics of Memory: Transitional Justice in Democratizing Societies 40 (Alexandra Barahona De Brito, Carmen Gonzalez Enriquez, & Paloma Aguilar Fernandez eds., Oxford University Press 2001).

Amnesty and the International Criminal Court, in International Crimes, Peace, and Human Rights: The Role of the International Criminal Court 77 (Dinah Shelton ed., Transnational Publishers 2000). CATALOG

The Need for Moral Reconstruction in the Wake of Past Human Rights Violations: An Interview with José Zalaquett, in Human Rights in Political Transitions: Gettysburg to Bosnia 195 (Robert Post & Carla Hesse eds., Zone Books 1999) (reprinted in Transitional Justice: Handbook for Latin America 159 (Félix Reátegui ed., Braz. Ministry of Justice & Int’l Ctr. for Transitional Justice 2011)). CATALOG

Book Reviews

Book Review, 45 Hum. Rts. Q. 335 (2022) (reviewing Reed Brody, To Catch a Dictator: The Pursuit and Trial of Hissène Habré (2022)).

Book Review, 56 Am. J. Comp. L. 233 (2008) (reviewing Pablo De Greiff ed., The Handbook of Reparations (2006)).

Book Review, 34 J. Latin Am. Stud. 195 (2002) (reviewing Mark Ensalaco, Chile under Pinochet: Recovering the Truth (1999)).

Book Review, 93 Am. J. Int’l L 981 (1999) (reviewing Alice H. Henkin ed., Honoring Human Rights: From Peace to Justice (1998)).

Book Review, 91 Am. J. Int’l L 573 (1997) (reviewing Alan E. Boyle & Michael R. Anderson eds., Human Rights Approaches to Environmental Protection (1996)).

Book Review, 21 Colum. J. Envtl. L. 183 (1996) (reviewing Harold Hohmann, Precautionary Legal Duties and Principles of Modern International Environmental Law (1994)).

Newspaper & Magazine Articles

Landslide Victory by Guatemala’s Social Democrats Spurs Furious BacklashJust Sec., Aug. 31, 2023. URL

Islands of Advances in a Sea of Setbacks: Central American Rule of LawJust Sec., Sept. 8, 2021. URL

Genocide and War Crimes in National Courts: the Conviction of Rios Montt in Guatemala and its AftermathASIL Insights, May 23, 2013. URL

The Spanish Civil War, Amnesty, and the Trials of Judge GarzónASIL Insights, July 25, 2012. URL

The Emerging Role of Private Social and Environmental International Standards in Economic GlobalizationABA Int’l Envtl. L. Comm. Newsl., Winter⁄Spring, 2006, at 10 (with Jason Morrison).

Prosecution of International Crimes Gains Teeth, Wider ReachL.A. Daily J., May 9, 2005, at 6. CATALOG

Other Publications

African Union Transitional Justice Policy Framework in Practice: Implementing Accountability MeasuresThe Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation (2013) (with Jasmina Brankovic). URL

Central America, the Inter-American System, and Accountability for International CrimesUC Hastings Research Paper No. 6 (2012). URL

Student Notes/Comments

Comment, State Responsibility to Investigate and Prosecute Grave Human Rights Violations in International Law, 78 Cal. L. Rev. 449 (1990).

Comment, Implied Waiver Under the FSIA: A Proposed Exception to Immunity for Violations of Peremptory Norms of International Law, 77 Cal. L. Rev. 365 (1989) (with Adam C. Belsky & Mark Merva).


  • University of California, Boalt Hall
    J.D., Law

  • University of California, Berkeley
    M.P.P., Public Policy

  • University of California, Berkeley
    B.A., Undergraduate Studies


  • International Law
  • Food Justice
  • International Human Rights
  • Torts
  • Practice of International Law