Integrating livelihoods in rehabilitation

Pau Pérez Sales - Editor-in-Chief, Torture Journal


There is an on-going discussion about the need for a holistic approach to torture rehabilitation, claiming that psychosocial and medical services are not effective if basic needs remain uncovered. Mental and physical health has been a primary focus of rehabilitation programmes, but many found that progress was difficult to maintain without socio-economic support as well. Survivors still have households to feed, battled unemployment and disabilities caused by the atrocities committed against them.

Recognising the complexity and inter-connectivity of social, economic, medical and psychological sequelae of torture, where one aspect can negatively or positively affect the other, this special edition of the Torture Journal seeks to explore how the integration of rebuilding a life project and the livelihood’s component can influence rehabilitation processes. Indeed, additional academic contributions are required to better understand how healing processes can be enhanced by including socio-economic support in rehabilitation programme.


Call for papers

The Torture Journal encourages authors to submit papers with a psychological, medical or legal orientation, particularly those that are interdisciplinary with other fields of knowledge. We welcome papers on the following:

  1. Defining livelihoods and its relationship with the concept of development in the context of the work with torture survivors. Going beyond a definition centered in material outcomes and working with the idea of life projects and finding meaning as part of the work with torture survivors.
  2. Survivor participation in design and implementation of livelihoods programs
  3. Innovative experiences in livelihoods programs: evolving from a business perspective to livelihoods programmes for social change.
  4. Transcending the individual or family perspective: from cooperatives to collective forms of organisation in livelihoods programmes.
  5. Beyond vulnerability: innovative approaches to resource allocation in precarious environments.
  6. Ensuring sustainability of livelihoods programs. The role of the State and civil society.
  7. Working in unstable contexts: livelihoods programs under conflict situations.
  8. Barriers to livelihoods programmes: limitations to work and employment integration in asylum seekers and refugees.
  9. Transnational experiences connecting refugees, relatives and comrades in country of origin.
  10. Effects on the overall well-being and quality of life resulting from the integration of a socioeconomic component into the rehabilitation processes.

Deadline for submissions: 31st of March, 2023


Perspectives on Survivor Engagement in the anti-torture sector

Pau Pérez Sales - Editor-in-Chief, Torture Journal


Though the term ‘survivor engagement’ is itself contested, it generally entails processes or activities through which people who have undergone traumatic experiences become actively involved in efforts to address the causes or consequences of those experiences at a community or societal level.

It is apparent that a considerable knowledge gap exists with relation to ‘survivor engagement’ in torture rehabilitation and advocacy. In particular, there is a paucity of research and documentation which examines the various approaches to and the effectiveness and ethical dilemmas of ‘survivor engagement’.

In an effort to address this knowledge gap, the Torture Journal is issuing a call for papers.

The objective is to gather and disseminate perspectives and experiences from researchers and practitioners on survivor engagement within the anti-torture sector. These are expected to help organisations engaged in the sector to understand what works and under what conditions.


Call for papers

The Torture Journal encourages authors to submit papers with a rehabilitation and/or legal orientation, particularly those that are interdisciplinary. We welcome papers on:

  1. What is ‘survivor engagement in an anti-torture or torture rehabilitation context’? The definition and the theoretical underpinnings of advocacy or health-based models
  2. Psychosocial and quality of life impact on survivors after participating in survivor engagement activities
  3. Stigma and other barriers to survivor engagement
  4. Re-traumatisation: risks and safeguards
  5. Advocacy engagement of people seeking asylum
  6. The role of healthcare workers and civil society organisation’s in supporting survivors to engage – balancing empowerment and duty of care
  7. Recommended practice in survivor engagement with mass media
  8. Mechanisms to support survivors to access decision-making roles in organisations addressing torture rehabilitation or legal reparation
  9. The impact of survivor engagement groups in community networks
  10. Gender-specific needs and gaps in participation

Deadline for submission: 31st of March, 2023


Submission guidelines and links

For more information

Contact Editor-in-chief ( if you wish to explore the suitability of a paper to the Special Section.

About the Torture Journal

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Current Issue

Vol. 32 No. 3 (2022): Torture Journal: Journal on Rehabilitation of Torture Victims and Prevention of Torture
					View Vol. 32 No. 3 (2022): Torture Journal: Journal on Rehabilitation of Torture Victims and Prevention of Torture

This issue introduces the revised edition of the Istanbul Protocol. The Editorial offers a summarised guide that outlines the new elements and main variations of the recently launched 2022-version. You will find it available in English, French and Spanish.

The contribution from Ergun Cakal opens the scientific section of this issue, presenting a doctrinal review which consolidates normative understandings of adequate prisoner food. Her paper discusses the aspects relevant to assessing when and how food provision is considered inadequate through a systematic exploration of international and regional standards.

Phyu Pannu et al. continue exploring resilience-promoting factors for refugees who have survived torture to understand how these impact the relationship between torture and mental health.

Aaron Gallagher et al. present a student-run clinical study to investigate the changes in asylum seekers’ profile over 3 years. They argue that understanding background and trauma profile of newly displaced populations is fundamental to meet their health needs and integration.

The section Perspectives compiles two papers. In the first one, Daniel J. N. Weishut discusses the potential participation of psychologists in IP-based physical examinations as it elaborates on the author’s perspective as clinical psychologist and relevant literature. In the second one, Maria Hartwig and Mark Fallon argue that the American government’s post 9-11 torture program was a big deceit, in that the designers, executors and enablers knew all along that torture does not elicit reliable information. The authors review the government’s own research and discuss the ways in which methods known to be unreliable were implemented, most saliently at the detention facility at Guantánamo Bay, against international law and human rights.

The Continuous education section includes a case where Cynthia Luo et al. argue the limitations of administering psychological surveys implying the development of ways to identify, mitigate and overcome such limitations.

In our News section, we celebrate the launch of the 2022-revised version of the Istanbul Protocol.

Finally, this issue includes the forthcoming call for papers for two special sections on survivors engagement and livelihoods in rehabilitation, in which we encourage you all to submit papers, in case you have relevant research and/or experiences to share in these areas.

Published: 2022-09-14

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The Torture Journal is an international scientific journal that provides an interdisciplinary forum for the exchange of original research and systematic reviews by professionals concerned with the biomedical, psychological and social interface of torture and the rehabilitation of its survivors.