September 2022 - August 2023
Study Mode Full-time
Application start 29 November 2021
Application end 25 February 2022
Application end (with scholarship) 28 January 2022


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Core Courses

Core courses are mandatory. They are structured in six clusters that cover central theoretical and practical issues in the fields of transitional justice, human rights and the rule of law.

The Law and Ethics of Transitional Justice

Frank Haldemann

What might ‘coming to terms with the past’ mean when societies emerge from civil wars or oppressive regimes? What does justice ‘in transition’ entail and how can it be achieved in such extraordinary circumstances? How can we meaningfully speak of reconciliation in such contexts? And what does international law prescribe with regard to these situations? This introductory course explores the legal and ethical frameworks of transitional justice. It also provides an introduction to the history and concept of transitional justice and to current debates revolving around the ‘what’, ‘how’ and ‘who’ of transitional processes.

International Law and Transitional Justice: Mapping the Terrain

Sandra Krähenmann

Various fields of international law play a role during transitional justice processes, ranging from international criminal law to address crimes committed by individuals, to international human rights law, for example in relation to reparations. In addition, while originally transitional justice processes took place during the transition from authoritarian regimes to democracy, nowadays many such processes take place in the aftermath of an armed conflict, during an armed conflict or between successive armed conflicts. In such situations, an additional legal regime, international humanitarian law, imposes obligations not only on states, but also armed non-state actors. Thus while transitional justice is often framed around redressing human rights violations, against the background of armed conflicts, international humanitarian law is also relevant. Finally, accountability for past atrocities, whether in peace time or times of armed conflict, plays a crucial role in transitional justice. Yet, the focus tends to be on the accountability of individuals, in particular individual criminal responsibility, rather than collective accountability, such as in the form of state responsibility."

Peacebuilding, Transitional Justice and Gender

Katia Papagianni

This course focuses on the intersection between peacebuilding, transitional justice and gender. Peacebuilding relies on dialogue and engagement among various segments of society to establish shared understandings of the social and political realities facing a country. Compromise and willingness to engage are central to its success. Transitional justice relies on a number of approaches, ranging from legal to dialogue-based ones. The intersection between the two is crucial to the longevity and quality of peace in conflict-affected countries. Throughout these processes, the question of inclusivity and participation is central. Who can participle and whose voice is heard? How does the end of conflict impact, or not, gender relations within a country? Can peacebuilding bring meaningful social transformation for all members of society? The course will rely on the literature discussing recent trends in peacebuilding and inclusive peace processes, with attention to the intersection with justice.