Welcome to Lore Roels, PhD researcher on rape mythology in the European asylum procedure


Lore Roels (she/her) is a doctoral researcher (FWO fellow) within the Migration Law Research Group at Ghent University and a member of the interfaculty Centre for the Social Study of Migration and Refugees (CESSMIR) and the Human Rights Centre (HRC). She holds a Bachelor of Laws and a Master of Laws degree from Ghent University, as well as an LLM degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), where she specialised in asylum law, law & gender and human rights. During her studies, Lore interned for two sexual and reproductive rights NGOs in Uganda (UYAHF and The Suubi Centre), the University Centre for Development Cooperation (UCOS), law firm Justis Lawyers Group, the Belgian Council for Alien Law Litigation and Vluchtelingenwerk Vlaanderen. As a Master of Laws student, she was a member of Ghent University’s Human Rights and Migration Law Clinic, supervised by the Human Rights Centre and law firm Vansteenbrugge Advocaten.https://cartoonmovement.com/cartoonist/414?page=0

Lore’s doctoral research echoes the UN Refugee Agency’s (UNHCR, 2013) concern that asylum authorities base credibility assessments on stereotypical and erroneous perceptions of gender, which strongly resembles the phenomenon of ‘rape mythology’. She applies rape mythology to credibility assessments in European asylum procedures related to sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV). Her research will collect data from 3 complementary resources: existing literature, asylum authorities (through case law analysis and KAP (Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices) surveys) and asylum seekers themselves (through qualitative interviews), in order to draw insights on the occurrence of ‘SGBV mythology’ in the European asylum procedure. Her research is supervised by Prof. Dr. Ellen Desmet (promotor at the Faculty of Law) and Prof. Dr. Ines Keygnaert (co-promotor at the Faculty of Medicine).