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2017 Galway Courses

Session 1: June 18–July 7, 2017

Genetics: Rights, Technology, and Human Identity

Professor Jonathan Kahn
9:00 a.m.–10:50 a.m.
Developments in biotechnology and the life sciences are challenging, modern notions of human identity and human rights. Advances in genomics have thrown into question existing legal approaches and instruments for dealing with such critical issues as discrimination, intellectual property, reproduction, health, drug development, informed consent, and privacy. They are reconstituting concepts of the legal rights and obligations of people in relation to their governing institutions. Focusing in particular on new genetic
technologies, this course seeks to identify and explore important ethical, legal, and policy issues associated with these developments.

International Law and International Humanitarian Law

Professors Ray Murphy and Shane Darcy
11:00 a.m.–12:50 p.m.
This course explores contemporary issues of international law and
international humanitarian law (IHL) or the law of armed conflict. It involves
a brief introduction to the sources of international law, an examination of
the UN Charter provisions governing the use of force, and an examination
of the concept of humanitarian intervention and UN-authorized or
UN-mandated peacekeeping operations. The course explores the concept,
purpose, and contemporary sources of IHL; the concept of armed conflict;
and the protection of civilians and the conduct of hostilities. The convention
dealing with the protection of prisoners of war also is examined. The course
refers to contemporary situations such as Iraq, Kosovo, and Afghanistan;
draws on a number of historical examples; and includes a review of the
implementation of IHL and the role of international tribunals.

Securing Women’s and Girls’ Access to Education: A Human Rights Perspective

Professor Monica Teixeira de Sousa
1:00 p.m.–2:50 p.m.
The right to an education is a basic human right and is enshrined in Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as other normative instruments of the United Nations and UNESCO. This course examines the complex law and policy issues involved in securing that right for women and girls in the face of economic, social, and cultural barriers, both abroad and in the United States. Students will be asked to consider the role that international institutions such as the World Bank currently play in either expanding or thwarting access to education. The course includes case studies from a variety of countries.

Session 2: July 10–July 28

Human Rights Law Practice: Theory and Practice of Fact Finding, Interviewing, and Counseling

Professor Ann Juergens
11:00 a.m.–12:50 p.m.
International human rights lawyers practice in a variety of contexts. Among other tasks, they investigate possible violations of human rights, develop and advocate policy proposals, prosecute and defend cases in international courts, argue before tribunals, and work with NGOs and governments for education and change. This course will explore questions of practice and ethics that are raised in human rights law work and in that process will equip students with investigation, interviewing, and counseling fundamentals. These essential human rights lawyering skills will be studied in three contexts: of 1) fact finding investigations (via witness interviews); 2) interviews of potential clients with human rights claims, conducted at the request of an NGO; and 3) advising clients, including those who may plan to break the law, who insist on pursuing a case that would set a bad precedent for others, or who may be complicit in human rights violations. The course will compare American and international regulatory structures governing investigation and lawyer-client relations, and will look at the impact of technology and globalization on lawyers’ actions in human rights settings.

Contemporary Challenges in the Protection of Human Rights Worldwide

Professor Kathleen Cavanaugh
1:00 p.m.–2:50 p.m.
This course aims to provide students with an overview of key contemporary challenges in the protection of human rights around the world. By the end of the course, students should be familiar with the historical context in which human rights norms developed, the major universal and regional systems of human rights law, and specific issues that adversely impact the full realization of human rights for many people across the globe.