Forum: Human Rights and Development

Friday 28 October 2016.
Great Hall, Strand campus, King’s College London
The Yeoh Tiong Lay Centre for Politics, Philosophy and Law is delighted to announce the first of three Law & Justice Fora for the academic year 2016-17. The first forum is on the topic ‘Human Rights and Development’, and will feature some of the leading thinkers and practitioners in the world working at the interface of human rights and development.
The aim of this forum is to address the place that human rights have in rigorous and effective thinking about development policy. There will be a special focus on the socio-economic rights, such as the rights to health, food and education etc. found in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966).
Among the questions to be discussed will be the following:

How should we understand the concepts of ‘human rights’ and ‘development’?

Is there a fundamental antagonism between human rights and development economics, or can the two approaches be reconciled?
Are socio-economic rights coherent and well-grounded norms? Are they obstacles to, or enablers of, development?
How is the content of a right such as the right to health to be specified? who bears the associated obligations?
What is the idea of ‘minimum core obligations’ of human rights? does it impose a strait-jacket on development by ignoring differences among states?
How can we devise reliable statistical indicators of human rights fulfilment? Can we avoid the metric usurping the place of the thing being measured?
Can human rights law and legal practitioners make an important contribution to development, or should they vacate the field in favour of development economics and its practitioners?

The forum is open to all and will be structured so as to facilitate engagement between the speakers and those in attendance.

9.30: Welcome: Principal of King’s College London, Professor Edward Byrne and the Director of the Yeoh Tiong Lay Centre for Politics, Philosophy & Law: Professor John Tasioulas

9.45-11.00: Session 1 Socio-Economic Rights & Development

Speaker: Sakiko Fukuda-Parr (New School, NYC) / Commentator: tbc

11.15-12.30: Session 2 The Human Right to Health

Speaker: Paul Hunt (University of Essex) / Commentator: Octavio Ferraz (King’s College London)

12.30-2.00: Lunch

2.00-3.00: Interview with Professor Amartya Sen (Harvard University)

by John Tasioulas (King’s College London)

3.15-4.30: Session 3: Minimum Core Obligations

Speaker: John Tasioulas (King’s College London) / Commentator: Max Harris (All Souls College, Oxford)

4.30-5.45: Session 4: Indicators, Development, Human Rights

Speaker: Sabina Alkire (George Washington University) / Commentator: Colleen Murphy (University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign)

6.00-7.30: Session 5: The Twilight of Human Rights Law? Speaker: Eric Posner (University of Chicago Law School) / Commentators: Michael Ignatieff (Central European University, Budapest), Onora O’Neill (University of Cambridge), Guglielmo Verdirame (King’s College London)


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