June 7-25, 2021, NEW YORK


The live synchronous sessions of the 2021 Summer Human Rights Institute (SHRI) will take place during the weekdays between 9am and 12pm EST at least 4 days each week. The SHRI will first provide a comprehensive Overview of International Human Rights Law, and then move into an in-depth examination of the following critical topics: 

    • Business and Human Rights
    • Civil and Political Rights 
    • Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
    • International Justice
    • Rights of Marginalized and Vulnerable Groups
    • Women and Children Rights

In addition to the core Institute Faculty, the program will feature guest lecturers working actively in the field of international human rights, to engage participants in an up-close examination of real-world legal aspects and tools of human rights law and practice. Please scroll down for detailed course descriptions of the six (6) modules to be covered.

Overview of International Human Rights

This module will provide a comprehensive introduction to the theory and practice of human rights law. Participants will examine the evolution of international human rights law and the role that international institutions play. Next, participants will study the key international instruments that protect human rights, as well as the main mechanisms for the implementation of international human rights law within the UN system. Topics to be covered include the debate over the universality, interdependence, and invisibility of rights; and the practical political realities of promoting human rights.

Business and Human Rights

Looking at the increasing expectation of socially responsible business and sustainable enterprise, this module will critically review recent developments in the field of business and human rights law, including in the area of responsible investment.  Participants will also analyze the current instruments that set the standards for corporate behavior, including the recently endorsed the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

Civil and Political Rights

Providing participants with an in-depth understanding of civil and political rights (CPR), this module will critically evaluate CPR instruments, enforcement mechanisms and the role of the Human Rights Committee. Analyzing a number of specific civil and political rights in context, participants also examine the important role that human rights now play in international development.

Economic Social and Cultural Rights

Beginning with a detailed examination of economic, social and cultural rights, this module will go over the international instruments and mechanisms used to protect them. Looking at socio-economic rights in context and using case studies, participants will also consider the expectation of progressive realization, methods of enforcement, and developing the understanding of extraterritorial obligations towards economic, social and cultural rights.

International Justice

Mass atrocities, including genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity, continue to rage around the world, from Syria and South Sudan to Iraq and Myanmar. This module will provide participants with a view of key aspects of the very much evolving law and practice of international criminal justice. This module will examine also, the origins, operations, and outcomes of historical and contemporary international justice measures to address such heinous crimes such as the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal and the permanent International Criminal Court.

Rights of Marginalized and Vulnerable Groups

This module will introduce the human rights issues facing groups particularly vulnerable to human rights abuses, such as the LGBT community and persons with disabilities. Readings will examine the various international human rights treaties addressing these concerns and describe the international legal framework’s increasingly cross-referential approach to monitoring such abuses. In addition, participants will explore the intersecting human rights abuses unique to individuals with multiple identities within these groups. 

Women and Children’s Rights 




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