Institutions of Global Governance & Civil Society

2016 Oct 18

Restoring the Rule of Law In Guatemala with Iván Velásquez Gómez

4:00pm to 5:30pm

Location: 

Adams House LCR (26 Plympton Street, Cambridge

 

Join Iván Velásquez Gómez, UN High Commissioner for the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala, (CICIG) as he describes his battles against illegal security groups and clandestine security  organizations in Guatemala – criminal groups believed to have infiltrated state institutions, fostering impunity and undermining democratic gains in Guatemala since the end of the country's armed conflict in the 1990s. The CICIG  represents an innovative initiative by the United Nations, together with a Member State, to strengthen the rule of law in a post-conflict...

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Kathryn Sikkink gives Plenary address at APSA 2016

Kathryn Sikkink gives Plenary address at APSA 2016

September 5, 2016

Carr Center's Kathryn Sikkink gave the Plenary address at the 2016 American Political Science Association's Annual Meeting. Her talk, "Are We Making Progress in Human Rights? Transformations in Knowledge and Activism,”  drew on material from her forthcoming book Making Human Rights Work: Evidence for Hope.  

Said Sikkink, "recently there has been a surge of pessimism about...

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Kathryn Sikkink

A Measure of Justice

July 11, 2016

In a new feature story in the Harvard Kennedy School Magazine, Kathryn Sikkink's work on documenting human rights violations is examined in depth.

"Sikkink, the Ryan Family Professor of Human Rights Policy, has devoted her career to addressing that question and the one that follows from it: How can human rights abuses be prevented? Over the past 40 years, she has tracked an evolving, relatively new norm she calls the “justice cascade,” which has increased accountability for human rights offenders, a recent example being the Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic....

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2016 Oct 05

The International Criminal Court (Study Group)

2:30pm to 4:30pm

Location: 

Nye C

The Carr Center for Human Rights Policy is delighted to announce that Fellow Luis Moreno-Ocampo will lead a study group on the ICC this semester.

Moreno-Ocampo, the first-ever Prosecutor of the ICC, will convene a dynamic group of select students and researchers from across Harvard University to workshop chapters of his forthcoming book on the emergence and evolution of the ICC.

The group will meet:

Carr Conference Room (Except for October 5th - Nye C)
2:30-4:30 PM
September 8th, October 5th...

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Mathias Risse. 6/2016. “On Where We Differ: Sites Versus Grounds of Justice, and Some Other Reflections on Michael Blake’s Justice and Foreign Policy.” Law and Philosophy, 35, 3, Pp. 251-270. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Blake’s book conveys a straightforward directive: the foreign policy of liberal states should be guided and constrained by the goal of helping other states to become liberal democracies as well. This much is what we owe to people in other countries—this much but nothing more. The primary addressees are wealthier democracies, whose foreign policy ought to be guided by the idea of equality of all human beings. My approach in On Global Justice bears important similarities to Blake’s, but with those similarities also come equally important differences. The purpose of this piece is to bring out these similarities and differences and in the process articulate some objections to Blake.

John Shattuck. 6/1/2016. “Democracy and Its Discontents.” The Fletcher Forum of World Affairs, 40, 2, Pp. 173-184. Publisher's VersionAbstract

In contrast to the European tradition of democratic pluralism, John Shattuck points to a new phenomenon in Eastern European states: illiberal democracy. Popularized by authoritarian political discourse in Hungary and Poland, the trend toward illiberalism evidences deep discontent with democracy’s economic, identity, and security implications for Europe. Democracy, however, is capable of reforming itself from the inside, allowing for new structures of participation for its citizens—whereas the strict control of power in illiberal democracy blocks avenues for meaningful change.

Introducing Carr Center's 2016-2017 Fellows

Introducing Carr Center's 2016-2017 Fellows

August 25, 2016

The Carr Center is pleased to announce our Fellows for the upcoming academic year. Carr Center Fellowships offer scholars and practitioners the opportunity to spend a semester or year at Harvard conducting research, sharing experiences with students, and exploring critical human rights issues with a distinguished group of peers. Our fellows come with a range of experience as researchers, practitioners and leaders in the filed of human rights.

See more information on all of Carr Center's fellows for the 2016-2016 year....

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Closing Civil Society Space

The Carr Center identifies and challenges threats to civil society actors, including restrictions imposed on human rights defenders and activists.

Federica D’Alessandra. 2014. “Human Rights and Alternative Legality in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories.”.Abstract

This working paper focuses on the legal protection awarded to the Arab populations under Israeli jurisdiction. In analyzing their legal protection, the author distinguishes between Arab Israelis and other Arab populations resident in territories under Israeli jurisdiction. The author does not deal with Israeli settlements or other discriminating laws such as marriage laws and the family reunification laws, but focuses on anti-terrorism measures. The working paper is divided in three parts: in the first part, the author discusses Israel’s domestic obligations towards Arab Israelis and Palestinian residents, and their de facto discrimination. The second part discusses the applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention to both the Occupied Palestinian Territories and Palestinian unlawful combatants. The third part discusses the applicability of human rights law to all territories under Israeli jurisdiction, and delves into the issue of the mutual relationship between the two international legal regimes in the territories under occupation. The working paper concludes that many Israeli anti-terrorism measures (such as check-points, night searches of Palestinian households, administrative detentions and targeted executions of Palestinian militants) violate individuals’ rights protected under domestic and international law. Moreover, this working paper finds that Israel’s rationale underpinning the non-applicability of such legislation to the Arab populations under its jurisdiction constitutes a form of ‘alternative legality’ and discrimination.

Federica D’Alessandra. 2014. “Israel’s Associated Regime: Exceptionalism, Human Rights and Alternative Legality.” Utrecht Journal of International and European Law. Publisher's VersionAbstract

In the context of Israel’s declared permanent state of exception, this article focuses on the legal protection awarded to the Palestinian populations under Israeli control. To broaden the discussion over Palestinian people’s rights, which generally focuses on the confiscation of land and the right to return, the author consciously focuses on anti-terrorism and security measures, which contribute to the creation of what the International Court of Justice has defined as an ‘associated regime’ of occupation. The article is divided into three parts. In the first part, the author discusses Israel’s domestic obligations towards Palestinians (arguing the case of both Palestinian citizens of Israel, and Palestinian residents) and their de jure and de facto discrimination. The second part discusses the applicability of humanitarian law, specifically the applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention. This section discusses the applicability of the Convention to both territories and people under Israeli control. The third part discusses the applicability of international human rights law to all territories under Israeli control and delves into the issue of the mutual relationship between the two international legal regimes in the territories under occupation. The article posits that Israel’s rationale for the non-applicability of such legislation to the Palestinian territories and populations it controls constitutes a form of ‘alternative legality’. The article concludes that Israel’s disproportionate application of security practices and anti-terrorism measures to the Palestinian segment of its population violates Palestinian rights protected under Israel’s domestic and international legal obligations.

Zachary D. Kaufman. 4/7/2016. United States Law and Policy on Transitional Justice: Principles, Politics and Pragmatics, Pp. 382 pages. Oxford University Press. Publisher's VersionAbstract

In United States Law and Policy on Transitional Justice: Principles, Politics, and Pragmatics, Zachary D. Kaufman, J.D., Ph.D., explores the U.S. government’s support for, or opposition to, certain transitional justice institutions. By first presenting an overview of possible responses to atrocities (such as war crimes tribunals) and then analyzing six historical case studies, Dr. Kaufman evaluates why and how the United States has pursued particular transitional justice options since World War II. This book challenges the “legalist” paradigm, which postulates that liberal states pursue war crimes tribunals because their decision-makers hold a principled commitment to the rule of law. Dr. Kaufman develops an alternative theory—“prudentialism”—which contends that any state (liberal or illiberal) may support bona fide war crimes tribunals. More generally, prudentialism proposes that states pursue transitional justice options, not out of strict adherence to certain principles, but as a result of a case-specific balancing of politics, pragmatics, and normative beliefs. Dr. Kaufman tests these two competing theories through the U.S. experience in six contexts: Germany and Japan after World War II, the 1988 bombing of Pan Am flight 103, the 1990-1991 Iraqi offenses against Kuwaitis, the atrocities in the former Yugoslavia in the 1990s, and the 1994  genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. Dr. Kaufman demonstrates that political and pragmatic factors featured as or more prominently in U.S. transitional justice policy than did U.S. government officials’ normative beliefs. Dr. Kaufman thus concludes that, at least for the United States, prudentialism is superior to legalism as an explanatory theory in transitional justice policymaking.

Kathryn Sikkink. 2014. “Latin American Countries as Norm Protagonists of the Idea of International Human Rights.” Global Governance, 20.3, Pp. 389-404. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Latin American governments, social movements, and regional organizations have made a far greater contribution to the idea and practice of international human rights than has previously been recognized. Most discussions of the global human rights regime stress its origins in the countries of the Global North. This article explores the role of Latin America states as early protagonists of the international protection of human rights, focusing in particular on the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man. Histories of human rights in the world emphasize the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, passed by the UN General Assembly on 10 December 1948, as the founding moment of international human rights. Few know that Latin American states passed a similar American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man a full eight months before passage of the UDHR. The American Declaration thus was the first broad enumeration of rights adopted by an intergovernmental organization. This article explores the American Declaration as an example of often overlooked Latin American human rights protagonism that has continued to this day, and that calls into question the idea that human rights originated in only the Global North.

Ezgi Yildiz

Ezgi Yildiz

Fellow

Ezgi Yildiz is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Carr Center, where she is affiliated with the Costs and Consequences of Torture Project. She holds a PhD in International Relations with a Minor in International Law (summa cum laude with distinction) from the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, Switzerland. She conducts interdisciplinary research on international relations and international law, and specializes in international courts and human rights with a focus on the European Court of Human Rights, and the prohibition of torture and inhuman or degrading treatment. Her research has been funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation’s Doc CH and Early Postdoc Mobility grants.

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BS

William F. "Bill" Schulz

Senior Fellow

Bill Schulz was the Executive Director of Amnesty International USA, the U.S. division of Amnesty International, from March 1994 to 2006. He was a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and an Adjunct Professor of International Relations at The New School. Schulz was the recipient of the 2000 Humanist of the Year award from the American Humanist Association. Since 2010, Schulz has served as the president and CEO of the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee.

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