The website of the course can be reached here:
About this course
Whether you are an EU citizen or not, this course concerns you! The EU is a major global actor in the field of human rights. EU treaties state that human rights are a fundamental value of the Union, which must be a ‘silver thread’ in all its policies. The EU now acts within an impressive array of competences, and therefore has the potential to impact – positively or negatively – anyone’s human rights.
This EU and Human Rights course teaches the basics of human rights, placing the EU at the centre of investigation. The course will examine a number of key questions:
- What factors are key to making the EU a positive or a negative force for human rights? An example is the economic crisis: what impact has it had on people’s human rights in the EU and the world?
- Which actors, friends or foes, must the EU engage with to successfully promote human rights? Examples include NGOs, businesses, or other international organisations like the Council of Europe or the United Nations.
- In key policy sectors in which the EU is active, what is on balance the impact of the EU? Examples include trade, development, migration social policy or international crisis management.
All of the course activities aim to improve your understanding of how the EU, alone or in combination with other local or global, state or non-state actors, can better promote and uphold human rights worldwide.
The course is intended for anyone interested in human rights and the EU, human rights law, European law, European Studies, international relations, global governance, etc.
It is divided into four modules:
1: The EU and Human Rights: Value Promotion and Coherence
2: Promoting Human Rights inside the EU
3: Promoting Human Rights in EU External Action
4: Capitalising on Success and Remedying Flaws
This MOOC is based on the FRAME project (www.fp7-frame.eu), which has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration. (Grant Agreement No. 320000)
What you’ll learn
- How the EU works
- What the EU does
- How the EU affects human rights
- Where the EU can do better to be a positive force for human rights
Week 1: Human Rights Challenges in EU Policies
The course will first outline the background to EU action, presenting the environment in which the EU acts. Subsequently, focus will move to the challenges and factors that affect EU performance in relation to human rights.
Week 2: EU as a Human Rights Actor
In this week the core concept of human rights will be introduced, and subsequently examined in relation to two other values making up the EU’s constitutional triad: namely the rule of law and democracy. These are set against EU policy requirements provided for by the Treaties according to which coherence is to be ensured in all the EU’s internal and external policies.
Weeks 3-5: EU’s Internal Setting and Fundamental Rights Policies; Themes and Priorities of EU External Human Rights Policies; Actors and Geographic Approaches in EU External Relations
In weeks 3 to 5 the selected policy fields will illustrate this complexity compartmentalising the initiatives undertaken by the EU to fulfil its human rights obligations both internally and externally. The presentation of the complex policies will be accompanied by concrete case studies and insights from the practice of policymaking.
Week 6: EU Human Rights Policy Evaluation
Finally, the course will provide insights into monitoring and evaluating possibilities, which may aid the EU in improving its human rights related performance both in terms of the use of policy instruments and shaping the policy content.
Meet the instructors
Joana Abrisketa Uriarte
Eva Maria Lassen
Carmen Márquez Carrasco
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available on ssrn here
Upholding the Rule of Law in the EU: On the Commission’s ‘Pre-Article 7 Procedure’ as a Timid Step in the Right Direction
Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University; University of Groningen – Faculty of Law
Middlesex University – School of Law
!!! Unfortunately, I had to skip the conference below – however, for those who have time, it still could be of interest.
The Project for Democratic Union’s Budapest Office is partnering with AEGEE-Budapest in organizing a Conference on the European refugee crisis. The primary focus of the event will be Hungarian migration and refugee policy in light of general European practice.
For many years the migration of European citizens within the EU has been causing worries due to its effect on the European labour market. Due to the high number of foreign job-seekers, governments of some Member States have raised their voices and called for urgent action and the reform of the EU’s migration policy. At the same time, the question of refugees coming from third countries – mainly war-zones – has been brought to the fore, after several accidents have occurred in the Mediterranean Sea.
Initially, only Mediterranean states were concerned by this situation, but lately other border countries of the EU, such as Bulgaria and Hungary, have become affected by the massive flow of often illegal immigrants and refugees. Although the EU is trying to find a coordinated answer to the problem, some countries managed to receive opt-outs and were able to carry out unilateral responses to this unprecedented situation. However, these practices are not far from being dangerous because in countries where extremism and xenophobia are on the rise, such as Hungary or Poland, they can result in a hostile attitude and hatred towards the people in despair.
Hungary’s fence erected on its Serbian border is only one example of the questionable methods EU Member States are using to solve the refugee crisis. The conference will address the Hungarian migration and refugee policy in light of the general European practice. It will also cover the EU’s current attempts to reform its migration policy and to show paths towards an acceptable solution to the situation.
Péter Balázs – Professor at Central European University, former Member of the European Commission, former Foreign Minister of Hungary
Carlos Puente – Economist, Attorney at Law, Political Scientist, Senior Visting Professor
Dezső Tamás Ziegler – Senior Lecturer at Eötvös Loránd University – Faculty of Social Sciences, Research Fellow at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences – Institute for Legal Studies
Event audience: Open to Public
For any further questions you may contact: Veronika Czina from PDU Budapest firstname.lastname@example.org or Péter Sczigel from AEGEE-Budapest email@example.com
Fővám tér 8 – Budapest
Date(s) – 23/09/2015
7:10 pm – 8:40 pm
Fővám tér 8