Join our Online Executive Master in the Law of Armed Conflict and Upgrade Your Legal Skills

1 February 2024

Applications for the upcoming academic year of our Executive Master in International Law in Armed Conflict are now open.

They will remain open until 30 April 2024 – meaning that interested candidates have two months to apply – with courses starting at the end of September 2024.

A Unique Online Part-Time Programme

Our online Executive Master in International Law in Armed Conflict is one of the few innovative and intellectually challenging programmes in the law of armed conflict offered today.

Designed for professionals with demanding jobs and responsibilities, it provides them with a solid legal background to address the multiple challenges that arise in contemporary armed conflicts.

Tailored Programme and Teaching

The programme is fully online and part-time. Courses take place over nine months (end of September to the beginning of June), weekdays at lunchtime (12:00 –14:00 CET). When participants cannot follow a course for professional reasons (e.g. missions, travel, conferences), they can watch the recordings afterwards as all the courses are recorded.

We also run tutorials and methodology sessions to support participants in their learning, allowing them to go over key concepts, grasp potentially challenging issues and prepare for the exams.

An online platform allows participants to interact directly with professors, teaching assistants and other participants during classes and access all the course materials and readings as well as submit their exams.

Exams take place online at the end of classes (June-July) with retakes in August-September.

One output of the Executive Master is a master’s paper written under the guidance of a faculty member that allows participants to investigate a subject of special interest and deepen expertise through research as well as potential exchanges with experts, scholars and practitioners. Participants have six months to submit their master’s paper following the successful passing of exams.

‘I particularly enjoy when we work in groups as this allows me to interact with other participants and debate specific cases. In addition, understanding the interplay of public international law, IHL, IHRL, and international criminal law is fascinating and expands my understanding of the legal frameworks applying to armed conflicts.

Giada Rubino, Human Rights Associate at the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Colombia

Acquire a Solid Knowledge of the Legal Frameworks Relevant to Armed Conflict

The programme covers international law, international humanitarian law, international human rights law, international criminal law, international refugee law and their interplay, providing solid theoretical and practical knowledge of the law that applies to armed conflicts and how it is implemented in real situations. It also addresses current issues and challenges, including the repression of terrorism or the responsibility to protect.

‘Teaching and interacting with participants from all over the world and with such diverse backgrounds is an experience unrivalled in its rewards. My classes have become a place where we share our respective knowledge, my role is that of recalling over and over the role of public international law in the participants’ everyday professional lives, allowing them to strengthen and enhance the impact of their arguments.’

Giovanni Distefano, Member of the Executive Master Faculty and Professor of International Law at the University of Neuchatel

Moving One’s Career Forward

By providing the necessary tools to apply the international legal framework in complex contemporary conflicts, our Executive Master equips high-level professionals wanting to acquire additional responsibilities or move their careers forward.

‘The programme will reinforce my knowledge of the international legal framework that applies in armed conflicts and enable me to advance in my professional career.’

Myriam Haddad, Legal Adviser at the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Libya

A Three-Steps Online Application Process

You can apply online in three steps:

  • Complete the application form
  • Attach the required documents
  • Submit your application

Make sure you have all the requested information and documents before starting your application!

For Questions

If you still have questions, our FAQ addresses the main questions related to our Executive Master, the programme and the admission procedure.

You can also contact our Student Office which will respond to your questions and queries about the programme (


Online learning visual News

44 Professionals Begin Their Online Learning Journey in Our Executive Master in International Law in Armed Conflict

25 September 2023

Hailing from 30 different countries, the 44 participants bring a wealth of experience from a wide range of sectors, including international organizations, NGOs, government entities, development agencies, law firms, and the private sector.

Read more

Yemen,  Taiz, Salah district. A destroyed building. News

Mastering International Law in Armed Conflict: Explore our Online Short Courses

8 September 2023

For the 2023–2024 academic year, we offer 16 online short courses covering legal issues and topics relevant to armed conflicts.

Read more

Cover page of the book Event

Book Launch: ‘Equality and Non-Discrimination in Armed Conflict, Humanitarian and Human Rights Law in Practice’

21 February 2024, 18:30-20:00

The author and leading experts in IHL and human rights will discuss humanitarian and legal issues pertaining to equality and non-discrimination in armed conflict, based on the findings presented in the book.

Read more

Mali, Ménaka Region, Tassassat village. In this village, the ICRC has installed a watering place to support the villagers who are affected by the combined effects of conflict and climate change. Event

The Weaponizing of Water in Contemporary Armed Conflicts

27 February 2024, 12:15-14:00

This IHL Talk, organized with the Geneva Water Hub, will discuss the weaponization of water in contemporary armed conflicts and the importance of IHL and human rights law in preventing and mitigating the consequences on civilians.

Read more

Iraq, Mosul. View of the west bank after the war. Project

IHL in Focus

Started in January 2024

As a yearly publication, it keeps decision-makers, practitioners and scholars up-to-date with the latest trends and challenges in IHL implementation in over 100 armed conflicts worldwide – both international and non-international.

Read more

Neutrotechology Project

Neurotechnology and Human Rights

Started in August 2023

This project addresses the human rights implications stemming from the development of neurotechnology for commercial, non-therapeutic ends, and is based on a partnership between the Geneva Academy, the Geneva University Neurocentre and the UN Human Rights Council Advisory Committee. 

Read more

Cover Page of Research Brief Publication

Environmental Human Rights as a Tool in Early Warning and Conflict Prevention The Role of the Human Rights Council

published on January 2024

Erica Harper, Baïna Ubushieva

Read more

Cover page of the publication Publication

Delivering the Right to Peace: Towards a Reinforced Role of the Human Rights Council in the UN's Peace and Security Framework

published on October 2023

Erica Harper, Adam Day

Read more