September 2020 - August 2021
Study Mode Full-time
Application start 18 November 2019
Application end 28 February 2020
Application end (with scholarship) 31 January 2020


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Core Courses

Core courses are mandatory and are spread over the two semesters. They are structured in six modules that cover central theoretical and practical issues in the fields of transitional justice, human rights and the rule of law.

Human Rights and Transitional Justice: Victims’ Perspective

Clara Sandoval

What human rights standards are applicable in times of transition? What rights do victims have? What constitutes an effective remedy after mass atrocities? What is the role of international and regional human rights bodies and courts in this respect? This course draws out the links between the field of transitional justice and human rights. It provides students with a thorough background on legal obligations and theories in the field of human rights. Specific case studies of transitional societies enable students to better understand challenges and tensions, for example regarding the question of peace versus justice.

Cultural Diversity, Identity Claims and Human Rights in Transitional Societies

Neus Torbisco-Casals

Indigenous peoples, linguistic minorities and ethnic groups, among others, typically claim a wide range of group-differentiated rights or accommodations in order to protect their specific cultures, overcome a history of abuse, and attain a higher level of equality vis-à-vis the larger majority population. Over the last decade, the discussion on how to accommodate such claims has become prominent in the growing literature on transitional justice and development. Managing diversity surely remains a challenge in all societies; yet, this task is especially acute in transitional societies divided along ethnocultural lines that need to confront a legacy of past injustices. This course traces the main lines of these debates with a view to identifying different approaches to managing diversity and their implications for human rights, democratic governance and political justice in transitional societies. Applying an intersectional analysis, the discussion aims at acknowledging the complexity of the experiences of injustice and discrimination that continue to damage inter-group relations, thus posing a significant threat to the success of political and social reforms. A practical and comparative focus will be provided through class discussions on specific cases from a variety of contexts. The readings consist of materials drawn from several disciplines, including legal and political theory, human rights law, social philosophy and gender and cultural studies.

Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

Christophe Golay

This course focuses on the promotion and protection of economic, social and cultural rights (ESCR), including the rights to food, health, housing, and water. The course will present a history of ESCR, and define ESCR and states’ obligations. It will analyse the role played by monitoring mechanisms, including United Nations (UN) treaty bodies and special rapporteurs. The role of UN agencies and NGOs will also be discussed.