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Welcome to IBRU

Since its founding as the International Boundaries Research Unit in 1989, IBRU has been the world’s leading research centre on international boundary making and dispute resolution. Today, IBRU joins work in international boundary law with the geographic study of borders and bordering in the 21st century. 

Through research, consultancy, and training, IBRU facilitates enhanced understanding of border areas, contributes to the peaceful resolution of boundary disputes, and engages with broader geographic questions concerning the changing nature of sovereignty, territory, citizenship, and the political organisation of space. 

IBRU is part of the Geography Department at Durham University.

More about IBRU
Over 60 training workshops delivered globally in 25 years
1,650 participants trained to date
Participants from over 120 countries involved in our training programmes
Specialised maps and databases including the definitive map of maritime jurisdiction and boundaries in the Arctic region

IBRU Training Workshops 2022

Since 1996, IBRU has run over 60 professional workshops, training over 1,650 participants from over 120 countries in technical issues in boundary delimitation, recovery, research, and negotiation.

IBRU runs regular professional training workshops on practical aspects of boundary-making and dispute resolution, including maritime boundary delimitation, negotiating international boundaries, preparing for litigation and arbitration, geographical information in boundary-making, and archive research for boundary dispute resolution. We have 3 face to face training workshops and an online training workshop scheduled for 2022.

Our 2022 training workshops

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Online Course: Introduction to International Boundaries

This online training course provides a contextual overview of international boundaries, covering topics including definition, delimitation and dispute resolution.

Find out more
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Borderlines Newsletter 2022

Borderlines provides an update on the activities of IBRU and information on developments in the wider boundary community around the world.

The latest edition
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Milefsky Award

Ray Milefsky has kindly endowed upon IBRU an annual award to honour a leading border practitioner or organisation. Read about the successful nomination for 2021 and the past winners of the Award.

More about the award
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IBRU Maps and Publications

IBRU is a world leader in producing maps, databases, and briefing papers that explore complex and contested international boundaries. In addition to the Arctic Maps series, IBRU has published maps of South Atlantic maritime claims, a database of international river boundaries, and other studies.

Maps and publications

Latest boundary news

ICJ rule Columbia must cease activities in the EEZ waters of Nicaragua

A ruling by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) has addressed a dispute between Nicaragua and Colombia over maritime borders which has lasted for many decades.
Image of the Peace Palace in The Hague by E Buxton

Russia stops peace treaty talks with Japan over disputed Kuril Islands

The Russian Foreign Ministry has announced it will stop negotiations with Japan on a peace treaty to officially end a conflict dating back to World War II involving the disputed Kuril Islands. The move which also includes the withdrawal from joint economic projects, is the result of Tokyo’s decision to impose sanctions on Russia over President Vladimir Putin’s attack on Ukraine.
Kuril Islands. Image courtesy of: Navy Matters: Russia To Militarize Kuril Islands (

Get in Touch

Enquiries about IBRU: Centre for Borders Research should be sent via the email link below.

Contact Us

Department of Geography 
Durham University 
Durham, DH1 3LE 
United Kingdom 
Tel: +44 (0)191 334 1965 
Fax: +44 (0)191 334 1962