Our New Visiting Fellow: Professor Claudia Martin

30 June 2023

Professor Claudia Martin is Co-Director of the Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and a Professorial Lecturer in Residence at American University Washington College of Law. She specializes in international law, international and comparative human rights law, and Inter-American human rights law. She is also a founding member and serves in the Secretariat of GQUAL, a campaign to promote gender parity representation in international courts and organs.

She just started as Visiting Fellow at the Geneva Academy and will stay with us until 31 July 2023.

What motivated you to carry out a fellowship at the Geneva Academy?

The reason that motivated me to apply to the Geneva Academy is the prestige of this academic institution and the faculty involved in the research and programmes offered under its auspices. I believe that the Geneva Academy is at the forefront of human rights academic work in Geneva and attracts highly specialized professionals and activists to debate timely and innovative issues. There is no better place to spend time as an academic in Geneva than at this institution!

What will be the focus of your research during this fellowship?

The focus of my fellowship will be on drafting a paper entitled ‘Enhancing the avenues for redress and accountability in the Inter-American human rights case law: from “aggravated” international State Responsibility to the characterization of gross violations of human rights as international crimes’.

In addition, I intend to participate in the sessions of the United Nations Human Rights Council and other treaty bodies meetings in Geneva during the period that I will spend in Geneva. As a member of the Secretariat of the GQUAL Campaign, I treasure the opportunity to learn more about the dynamics of these international mechanisms and interact with officials, diplomats, and activists who will come to Geneva to participate in those meetings.

Why are these issues important?

The paper that I will complete during my time at the Geneva Academy intends to connect developments in the Inter-American (IA) Court human rights case law adopted to articulate responses to gross and systematic human rights violations perpetrated before the Rome Statute was approved. These principles that were crucial to support domestic prosecutions of perpetrators of international crimes continue to play a central role in regard to States in the region that have not ratified the Rome Statute (for example, Nicaragua) or those which are trying to implement transitional justice processes at the national level (for example, Colombia).

What will be the impact of this research?

I expect that the research and paper will provide a systematized analysis of the developments of the IA Court case law on this subject, allowing practitioners, activists, and state officials to reflect on the impact of these principles and the possibility of resorting to them at the domestic and regional level to shape policy and/or legal decisions.

What do you expect from your time at the Geneva Academy?

I expect to interact with faculty and researchers who share similar interests and explore opportunities for cooperation between the Geneva Academy and the institution that I co-Direct at American University Washington College of Law, in Washington DC.

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