International Protection of Human Rights

ldrop2091  2019-2020  Louvain-la-Neuve

International Protection of Human Rights
Note from June 29, 2020
Although we do not yet know how long the social distancing related to the Covid-19 pandemic will last, and regardless of the changes that had to be made in the evaluation of the June 2020 session in relation to what is provided for in this learning unit description, new learnig unit evaluation methods may still be adopted by the teachers; details of these methods have been - or will be - communicated to the students by the teachers, as soon as possible.
5 credits
30.0 h
De Schutter Olivier;
Main themes
The course of international protection of human rights is divided in two parts. First, it examines the international mechanisms for the protection of human rights, particularly those established at the universal and European levels and, in lesser detail, those created within other regional organizations. Second, the course examines the substantive law of human rights, on the basis of the main international treaties which implement the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and of the concepts these treaties rely upon (restrictions to rights and freedoms, derogations, absuse of rights, progressive realization, etc.). Specific attention will be paid to the United Nations core human rights treaties and to the instruments of the Council of Europe. Thus, the course aims at introducing the participants to the international and European law of human rights (sources, interpretation, control mechanisms, and actors).

At the end of this learning unit, the student is able to :

1 - To acquire a good understanding of international mechanisms for the protection of human rights and of its main actors ; - To familiarize oneself with the sources of international human rights law ; - To gain a good knowledge of the main concepts on the basis of which the international law of human rights develops and is built. This course forms part of a coherent option of three courses. The professors in this option form a teaching team : they seek to ensure that the contents and methods of each course offer a consistent set of teachings and that they are complementary. This course uses participatory teaching methods (learning through case studies, discussion of the case-law, debates with outside invitees, field experience…) allowing the students to develop an approach which is at once critical, prospective, and inventive. The participants are encouraged to be actively involved in learning the subject, both individually and as a group. In this perspective, the professors from different options permanently exchange about their teaching experiences with a view to constantly improving them.

The contribution of this Teaching Unit to the development and command of the skills and learning outcomes of the programme(s) can be accessed at the end of this sheet, in the section entitled “Programmes/courses offering this Teaching Unit”.
This course provides a general introduction to international human rights law, in both its substantive dimensions (sources and general principles) and its institutional dimensions (mechanisms of protection). The substantive part presents the emergence of a 'jus commune" of international human rights, resulting from comparative human rights law. The institutional part is largely dedicated to understanding the mechanisms established within the UN to strengthen the promotion and protection of human rights.
Teaching methods
This course relies on lectures, but also on the MOOC version of the course (available on the edX platform) and on the organisation of 'working labs' for the development of collective projects, allowing the students to use, on practical issues, the theoretical understanding they have gained.
Evaluation methods
This course is subject to a continuing assessment based on two requirements. First, the students are expected to satisfactorily complete the MOOC version of the course on the edX platform (International Human Rights). Secondly, they shall be attributed a grade on the basis of their participation in one of the working labs, using the knowledge gained from the course.
Ouvrage de référence (facultatif): Olivier De Schutter, International Human Rights Law (Cambridge University. Press, 3rd ed., 2019).
Faculty or entity

Programmes / formations proposant cette unité d'enseignement (UE)

Title of the programme
Master [120] in Law

Master [120] in Law (shift schedule)

Advanced Master in European Law

Advanced Master in International Law

Advanced Master in Tax Law