Since ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child twenty years ago, considerable progress has been made in advancing young childrens enjoyment of basic social and economic rights including access to basic education and health care. These gains are not matched by corresponding advances for older children, particularly girls, minorities, and migrants: in many developing societies, secondary and tertiary education remains widely inaccessible, maternal mortality remains the largest cause of female teenage death, and youth unemployment and violence have reached epidemic Read more about Childhood, Adolescence, Youth, and International Human Rights
Government Lawyer (3 fall classroom credits). Some seats are reserved for clinical students. Students who are accepted into this clinic will be enrolled in the required course by the Office of Clinical and Pro Bono Programs. If a student drops the clinic, they will also lose their seat in the required course.
This clinic requires that students have taken or are currently taking at least one of the courses listed below. Failure to meet the pre-/co-requisite course requirement will result in the student being dropped from the clinic. Environmental Law (fall 2015); Supreme Court and the Environment (fall 2015); Energy Law and Policy (fall 2015); International Environmental Law (winter 2016); Advanced Environmental Law in Theory and Application (spring 2016); Natural Resources Law (spring 2016).
This course focuses on the interplay among states, international organizations (such as the UN, WTO, IMF, and World Bank), multinational corporations, civil society organizations, and activist networks in global governance. Cases are drawn from a broad range of issue areas, including peace and security, economic relations, human rights, and the environment. The objective is to better understand the evolution of global governance arrangements and what difference they make, in light of globalization and emerging geopolitical changes.
This is an introductory course on public international law, which is the body of rules governing relations both between states and, increasingly, between a diverse set of actors, including individuals, civil society, international institutions, NGOs, and corporations. The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the foundational rules of the international legal system, which are vitally important to a wide range of global policy challenges such as waging war, combating terrorism, preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, protecting human rights, preserving the Read more about Public International Law
For over twenty-five years, the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic (HIRC), in partnership with Greater Boston Legal Services (GBLS), has focused on direct representation of individuals applying for U.S. asylum and related relief, as well as representation of individuals who have survived domestic violence and other crimes and/or who seek avoidance of forced removal in immigration proceedings (i.e., VAWA, U-visas, Cancellation of Removal, Temporary Protected Status, etc.). HIRC is also involved in appellate and policy advocacy at the local, national, and international levels.
This course asks how we should understand the rise of contemporary human rights -- as a set of norms, an ethical project in the world, and as a set of institutions and laws. Starting far back in Western history, the course begins by asking what the basic moral building blocks of contemporary human rights culture - humanity, rights, compassion, pain and so on - mean and takes up what history has to say about them. In the second half of the course, we turn to the origins of the set of institutions, like governmental and intergovernmental structures and non-governmental movements, that is now Read more about History of Human Rights
Through the International Human Rights Clinic - Advanced, students continue to explore theory and practice and to refine core skills necessary to become effective and thoughtful human rights advocates. Students again work on pressing and timely human rights problems around the world, in collaboration with leading international and local human rights organizations. Those in the Clinic have the opportunity to explore a range of approaches to advance the interests of clients and affected communities. For example, students interview survivors and document abuse; undertake legal, factual, and Read more about International Human Rights Clinic - Advanced
Through the International Human Rights Clinic, students link theory with practice and learn core skills necessary to become effective and thoughtful human rights advocates. Students work on pressing and timely human rights problems around the world, in collaboration with leading international and local human rights organizations. Those in the Clinic have the opportunity to explore a range of approaches to advance the interests of clients and affected communities. For example, students interview survivors and document abuse; undertake legal, factual, and strategic analysis; and interact Read more about International Human Rights Clinic
This course provides a general introduction to the law, theory, and practice of internationally recognized human rights. The course is designed to provide students with an informed and critical perspective on international instruments and institutions, and domestic legal arrangements relating to the articulation and implementation of human rights. Topics will include the historical origins of modern human rights law; connections between civil, political, social, and economic rights; global, regional, and national methods of implementation and enforcement; and comparative discussion of some Read more about International Human Rights
This advanced seminar will focus on selected topics relating to the work of the UN human rights treaty bodies, especially the Human Rights Committee (of which the instructor was previously a member). Topics vary from year to year, but may include such subjects as arbitrary detention, religious exemptions, military trials, forced evictions, "hate speech," rights of persons with disabilities, and international monitoring procedures. The seminar will meet six times each semester, in two-hour sessions. Grading will be based on class participation and a series of short reaction papers. Read more about Human Rights in the UN Treaty Bodies
Human rights norms and discourse are employed widely by advocates around the world in their struggles for social justice. This course explores what it means to be a human rights advocate, whether one is engaged in debates over U.S. policy at home and abroad, the role of corporations in alleged violations, or the role of rights in times of transitions from conflict. Through case studies and simulations, this seminar examines the various dimensions and limitations of human rights advocacy, including strategic, ethical, and tactical challenges. What are the different ways that human rights Read more about Human Rights Advocacy
This seminar offers advanced training on a variety of skills relevant to the work of human rights advocates. It is designed for students who already have at least one semester of experience in the International Human Rights Clinic. Students will work intensively on a skills module of their choice. Past skills modules have focused on media work, fact-finding and interviewing, negotiation and coalition-building, and community-based advocacy. Through these modules, students build experience and leadership skills crucial for a career in human rights, exploring ways to set and advance human Read more about Advanced Skills Training for Human Rights Advocacy
This seminar will address difficult questions in the contemporary world at the intersection of human rights law and some interpretations of Islamic law. Topics to be examined include religious freedom, free expression, sexual relations and sexuality, gender equality, the rights of children, and public dress and behavior. The seminar will focus on how human rights organizations-international, regional, and local-have worked on cases in these areas of concern, and will consider how such organizations can most effectively address issues that involve religious belief.