Heather Smith-Cannoy


Heather Smith-Cannoy is an associate professor of political science whose work focuses on human rights and international law.  She is especially interested in the effects of international law on the rights of women. Her other research interests include sex trafficking, women and children’s rights, public health, migration and statelessness.    


  • Ph.D. Department of Political Science, University of California-San Diego 2007
  • M.A. Department of Political Science, University of California-San Diego 2004
  • B.A. (Magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa), Department of Political Science, University of California-Irvine 2000

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Research Interests

My research interests include: human rights, women's rights, international law, sex trafficking, migration and statelessness. 




Heather Smith-Cannoy (ed.) Emerging Threats to Human Rights: Resources, Violence, and Deprivation of Citizenship. Philadelphia: Temple University Press (2019).

Heather Smith-Cannoy, Insincere Commitments: Human Rights Treaties, Abusive States and Citizen Activism. Washington D.C.: Georgetown University Press (2012).


Christopher Tait, Abtin Parnia, Nishan Zewge-Abubaker, Wendy Wong, Heather Smith-Cannoy, Arjumand Siddiqi, “Did the Convention on the Rights of the Child Lead to Reductions in Child Mortality?” BMC Public Health (forthcoming May 2020).

Heather Smith-Cannoy, Wendy Wong, Arjumand Siddiqi, Christopher Tait, and Abtin Parnia “When Everyone Agrees: Human Rights Norms on Women & Children and Their Effects on Health” The International Journal of Human Rights (April 2020). https://doi.org/10.1080/13642987.2020.1743975

Arjumand Siddiqi, Wendy Wong, Heather Smith-Cannoy, Christopher Tait and Nishan Zewge-Abubaker, “Can the Health Effects of Widely-Held Societal Norms be Evaluated? An Analysis of the UN-CEDAW Convention” BMC Public Health 79, 9 (2019): 827-33.

Heather Smith-Cannoy, “Deprivation of Citizenship: An Examination of the Rohingya Refugee Crisis”, in Emerging Threats to Human Rights (Temple University Press, 2019).

Heather Smith-Cannoy, “Sex Trafficking and International Law” in International Human Rights of Women, Niema Reilly (ed.) (Springer Press, 2018).

Heather Smith-Cannoy, “Mainstreaming Human Rights: Assessing the Impact of Sixty Years of International Human Rights Law” in The Sage Handbook of Human Rights, Anja Mihr and Mark Gibney (eds.) (Los Angeles: Sage Press, 2014).

Heather Smith-Cannoy and Charles Anthony Smith, “Human Trafficking and International Cheap Talk: The Dutch Government and the Island Territories (with Charles Anthony Smith) in Globalizing Human Rights: Emerging Issues and Approaches, Charles Anthony Smith (ed) (New York: Routledge Press, 2013.)

Heather Smith-Cannoy, “Defending Democracy? Assessing the OAS’s 2002 Diplomatic Intervention in Haiti” Civil Wars 14, 3 (2012): 431-450.  

Heather Smith-Cannoy and Charles Anthony Smith, “Human Trafficking and International Cheap Talk: The Dutch Government and the Island Territories” The Journal of Human Rights 11, 1 (2012): 51-65.

Heather M. Smith, “Human Trafficking: Trends, Challenges, and the Limitations of International Law” Human Rights Review 12, 3 (2011): 271-286.

Charles Anthony Smith and Heather M. Smith, “Human Trafficking: The Unintended Effects of United Nations Intervention” International Political Science Review 32, 2 (2011): 139-60.

Heather M. Smith, “The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly: Assessing the Impact of the OAS and the UN on Human Trafficking in Haiti” in From Human Trafficking to Human Rights: Rethinking Contemporary Slavery, Alison Brysk and Austin Choi-Fitzpatrick (eds.) (Philadelphia: The University of Pennsylvania Press, 2011).    

Charles Anthony Smith and Heather M. Smith, “Embedded Realpolitik? Re-Evaluating US Opposition to the International Criminal Court,” in Governance, Order and the International Criminal Court: Between Realpolitik and a Cosmopolitan Court, Steven Roach (ed.) (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009).

Charles Anthony Smith and Heather M. Smith, “The Electoral Dis-Connection: Institutional Barriers to US Support for the International Criminal Court,” The Eyes on The International Criminal Court 3,1 (2006).


Fall 2020
Course Number Course Title
POS 361 American Foreign Policy
Spring 2020
Course Number Course Title
JHR 305 Theory Soc Justice Human Rts
POS 494 Special Topics
JHR 598 Special Topics
MAS 598 Special Topics
Fall 2019
Course Number Course Title
JHR 499 Individualized Instruction