Dr Alice Edwards

Global advocate for human rights

2024 TAS Australian of the Year Nominee

The important work of Dr Alice Edwards has assisted victims of war and violence around the globe. In August 2022, Alice was appointed as the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture to conduct fact-finding missions on allegations of torture and ill-treatment.  

From studying law at the University of Tasmania and a doctorate from the Australian National University, Alice’s commitment to people and peace has made a mark internationally.  

A highly skilled lawyer, scholar and negotiator, she has held senior roles at international organisations and the United Nations, and appointments at leading universities. 

Alice has led precedent-setting cases on human rights. She successfully argued that rape and sexual violence are forms of torture and persecution, enabling hundreds of thousands of victims to claim UN protection as refugees. Her fieldwork in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the late 1990s for female victims of war violence is still used as UN operational practice.