Call for Abstracts ‘Empowerment through Human Rights’

""Conference of the Doctoral College ‘Empowerment through Human Rights’ of the University of Vienna within the framework of the AHRI-COST Annual Conference 2012

""We invite abstract submissions of PhD students for all the themes below for a conference on ‘Empowerment through Human Rights’ to be held in Vienna, Austria, on 10-12 September 2012. The Doctoral College (Initiativkolleg) ‘“Empowerment through Human Rights’” is an inter-disciplinary group of 13 doctoral students, coordinated by the research platform ‘“Human Rights in the European Context’ of the University of Vienna and the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Human Rights”. All of the students write their theses on topics related to human rights in a wider sense and have their background in the disciplines of Law, Sociology, Psychology, Development Studies and African Studies.

""At the PhD school of the AHRI/COST conference, we would like to present our individual work and discuss it together with other PhD students writing their theses on related topics. The program will consist of six panels, taking place on two half-days, with three subsequent panels in each session.


Submission of abstracts must be made by Word document using the “Abstract Submission form” and sent to: by 30th April 2012.

Abstracts must be no longer than 300 words and must include your title, name and institutional affiliation and your email address for correspondence. Indicate clearly for which indicated themes below you apply. Please state clearly in the subject section of your e-mail that you are submitting an abstract for the COST postgraduate conference.

The themes for the conference:

  1. Poverty and Territory
  2. Asylum and Migration
  3. Mental Health and Human Rights
  4. Human Rights in Development
  5. Trafficking in Human Beings
  6. Criminal and Social Justice

Other topics related to the issues of Human Rights are also encouraged. Submissions with an interdisciplinary perspective are particularly welcomed. Travel expenses up to €300 and daily subsistence allowance for the duration of the conference will be covered for selected presenters. There is no registration fee. We look forward to reading your abstracts!

The fellows of the Doctoral College ‘Empowerment through Human Rights

Here is the link for the full announcement including application form.


Human Rights of Persons with Disabilities

3 April 2012 Please find the updated program here.

Workshop of the EUI Human Rights Working Group and the Academy of European Law Friday April 27, 2012

""Background: The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), in force since 2008, is novel in many ways. It adopts a new model considering persons with disabilities as full subjects of the law with clearly defined human rights, thus substituting the previous medical paradigm, as well as the social development model and the model based on non-discrimination principles. It incorporates elements of such understandings yet moves beyond them in the creation of a more comprehensive and integral framework. Because the treaty views disability as a result of the interaction between an inaccessible environment and a person, rather than an inherent attribute of an individual, it considers persons with disabilities as right holders capable of exercising such rights in an independent manner on the basis of equal citizenship. Also, the UNCRPD is, so far, the first and only core international human rights treaty to which the European Union (EU) is a party, and the first human rights treaty which the European Community, as it then was, was involved in negotiating and signing, alongside its Member States. From its very conception and negotiation, it adopted an “experimentalist character”, prioritizing actors such as Non-Governmental Organizations and National Human Right Institutions, and also envisioning them as necessary and helpful partners in the implementation of the Convention. This opens a space for timely and innovative discussions to which the EUI wishes to contribute constructively.

Concept: This workshop seeks to provide a discursive environment between experts and the EUI research and faculty community on the standards, aspirations and implementation of the UNCRPD. It also aims at exploring its role within domestic legislations and jurisdictions, from developed to developing countries, as well as the challenges it poses for different actors in International Law, in particular, the EU, and ultimately, its relevance and potentials for the persons with disabilities throughout the world. Speakers are asked to reflect on these issues in their presentations, which should last for no more than 20 minutes, and to make available in advance, one brief document that will complement their presentation.

Readings: Arnardóttir, Oddný Mjöll and Gerard Quinn (eds.), The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: European and Scandinavian perspectives, International Studies in Human Rights, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers/Brill Academic, 2009.

Courtis, Christian, “The right to life and the right to health of children with disabilities before courts: some Latin American examples”, in: Clements, L. and Read, J. (eds), Disabled people and the right to life: the protection and violation of disabled people’s most basic human rights, London: Routledge, 2008.

De Búrca, Gráinne, The EU in the negotiation of the UN Disability Convention, European Law Review, Vol. 35, No. 2, 2010; Fordham Law, Legal Studies Research Paper No. 1525611. Electronic copy available at:

Kumpuvuori, Jukka and Martin Scheinin (eds.), United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: multidisciplinary perspectives, The Center for Human Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Finland (VIKE), Publications Series of VIKE No.5, 2010.

Melish, Tara, “The UN Disability Convention: Historic Process, Strong Prospects, and Why the U.S. Should Ratify”, 14 Hum. Rts. Brief. 37, 2007.

To register please reply by email to:


 09:30 – 09:45 Welcome by the Human Rights Working Group and introductions: Cornelius Wiesener, EUI Researcher and Coordinator of the HRWG

09:45 – 11:30 Overview of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD)

Chair: Dorothy Estrada-Tanck, EUI Researcher and Member of the Human Rights Working Group

  • History of the negotiation of the UNCRPD, model and legal principles adopted: Martin Scheinin, Professor of Public International Law, EUI
  • Mainstreaming the UNCRPD: realizing rights of persons with disabilities through core UN bodies: Juan José Gómez Camacho, Mexican Ambassador to International Organizations in Geneva
  • Common but differentiated responsibilities to realize the UNCRPD: Jukka Kumpuvuori, Abo Akademi University

11:30 – 11:45 Coffee Break

11:45 – 13:30 The EU and the UNCRPD

Chair: Danai Angeli, EUI Researcher and Member of the Human Rights Working Group

  • The EU and its role in the UNCRPD: Delia Ferri, Professor of Constitutional Law, University of Verona Faculty of Law
  • Congruence of internal and external action of the EU on persons with disabilities: Francesco Francioni, Professor of International Law and Human Rights, EUI
  • Implementing the social model of disability: Philippe Reyniers, EUI Researcher
  • European Case Law on disabilities: added value and future prospects: Claire Kilpatrick, Professor of International and European Labour and Social Law, EUI

13:30 – 14:30 Lunch

14:30 – 16:30 Monitoring and implementation of the UNCRPD in the domestic sphere

Chair: Masa Anisic, EUI Researcher and Coordinator of the HRWG

  • Impact of the Convention’s equality approach on the substantial rights of the UNCRPD: Masa Anisic, EUI Researcher
  • Immediate obligations and progressive realization in the UNCRPD: Christian Courtis, Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
  • State monitoring of awareness raising campaigns on the rights of persons with disabilities developed by private corporations: Carlos Ríos, Member of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
  • Challenges and levels of compliance of the UNCRPD: Theresia Degener, Member of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

16:30- 16:45 Coffee break

16:45 – 18:30 The UNCRPD, relevant groups, organizations and partners

Chair: Alice Margaria, EUI Researcher and Member of the Human Rights Working Group

  • Legal principles of the UNCRPD applicable to all actors: Danai Angeli, EUI Researcher and Member of the Human Rights Working Group
  • The UNCRPD and the role of organisations of persons with disabilities: Stefan Tromel, Executive Director of International Disability Alliance
  • Advocacy tools for equal realization of rights of all persons with disabilities: Andrea Dabizzi, Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe

18:30 – 18:45 Roundtable and Closing Comments

Call for applications for participation in a Doctoral School in Disability Research

DisABILITY MUNDUS is a doctoral school, organized in conjunction with the ALTER European Association on Disability Research (AESDR) and Disability Studies in the Netherlands (DSiN) and intended to support research efforts on disability with a focus on the European continent. The school is targeted towards doctoral scholars, including pre-doctoral and post-doctoral, who wish to share their research ideas and projects with senior researchers. We will in particular also focus on research efforts in the context of European settings, including research that focuses on human rights, societal innovations, and critical issues that pertain to culture and society. Four axes of research have retained in particular the interest of disABILITY MUNDUS: (1) the socialization and articulation of people as disabled, as a result of interfaces with the provisions and procedures of contemporary societies; (2) the making of public space in the contexts of cities; (3) the intersections of disability with other significant phenomena (such as migration, sexuality); and (4) the impact of technology. The program will allocate time towards formal sessions, focused discussions, and networking. The conveners endeavor to tailor activities to directly support the doctoral research of the participants.

Call for applications

ERA Academy of European Law EU Anti-Discrimination Law Seminar

""This seminar is part of a series that ERA has organised every year since 2003 devoted to the two European anti-discrimination directives adopted under Article 19 TFEU (ex Article 13 TEC). Directive 2000/43 prohibits all forms of discrimination based on race or ethnic origin in a number of areas. Directive 2000/78 prohibits all forms of discrimination in employment and occupation based on religion or convictions, handicap, age and sexual orientation.

Certain key subjects will be dealt with, such as the concepts of direct/indirect discrimination and harassment, the sharing of the burden of proof and the question of remedies and sanctions. Furthermore, the seminar will look into each of the different grounds, with special attention to the case-law of the European Court of Justice.

Interaction among participants will be encouraged through periods of discussion and working groups requiring their active participation.

Monday 14 and Tuesday 15 May: Seminar for legal practitioners in English and French

  • Monday 4 and Tuesday 5 June: Seminar for members of the judiciary in English and German
  • Monday 17 and Tuesday 18 September: Seminar for academics in English
  • Monday 8 and Tuesday 9 October: Seminar for members of the judiciary in English and Spanish
  • Monday 5 and Tuesday 6 November: Seminar for legal practitioners in English and German
  • Monday 19 and Tuesday 20 November: Seminar for members of the judiciary in English and Polish