Centre for European Law and Internationalisation

News and events

The latest activities from CELI. 

The journey of business and human rights arbitration from Geneva to The Hague, 30 March 2022

The third event of the CELI Annual Lecture Series 2021-2022 examines how international arbitration can contribute to human rights protection in context of business disputes.

The UN Human Right Council adopted the Guiding Principles on Business and Human rights (UNGPs) ten years ago and in October 2021, it recognized a new fundamental right of access to ‘a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment’. International arbitration legal instruments - to the contrary - do not necessarily address human rights and for that reason, the regime suffers from legitimacy crises. How is the international arbitration community responding to the call for greater integration of human rights protection in business disputes? Can existing investment treaties protect environmental goals? What legal and non-legal tools can arbitration practitioners use to direct international arbitration practice towards an effective protection of human rights? Our speakers will address these questions, and many more related to the journey of business and human rights issues in recent international and arbitration legal initiatives. 

Details

Date and time: 30 March 2022, 5-7pm

Venue: Online

Contact: For more information please contact blerina.xheraj@leicester.ac.uk

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The situation in Ukraine, 11 March 2022

An interdisciplinary event blending legal and historical analyses of the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. The event is chaired by Dr Sarah Fox.

Speakers

  • Dr Sergey Sayapin (Associate Professor, KIMEP University, Kazakhstan and CELI Research Associate) – International Law aspects 
  • Dr Alex Korb (Associate Professor in Modern European History, University of Leicester) – "Putin's obsessions. Russia, the Ukraine, and their shared past" 
  • Dr Ewa Zelazna (Lecturer, Leicester Law School) – The EU intervention 
  • Prof. Katja Ziegler (Sir Robert Jennings Professor of International Law and CELI Co-Director) – The rule of law (role of) 
  • Dr Loveday Hodson (Associate Professor, Leicester Law School) – Human rights implications of the Russian invasion 
  • Dr Alan Desmond (Lecturer, Leicester Law School) – On the unfolding refugee crisis 

Followed by a question and answer session.

Details

Open to: All

Date and time: 26 January 2022, 5–7pm

VenueOnline (MS Teams Live)

Contacted.bates@leicester.ac.uk

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The future of human rights protection in the UK – a “Modern Bill of Rights”?, 26 January 2022

Do the UK Government's 2022 proposals to establish a “Modern Bill of Rights” represent a backward step in human rights protection, and what is motivating them?

In December 2021, the UK government published two documents vital for the future of the protection of human rights in the UK: a detailed, 500-page Independent Review of the Human Rights Act, and a Consultation on reforming the Act. The latter is entitled: ‘Human Rights Act Reform: A Modern Bill of Rights’. It contains the government’s proposals for human rights reform; however, it ignores several of the Independent Review’s recommendations, and raises many new issues. Critics argue the proposals within the Consultation would diminish rights protection significantly. It is said to be politically motivated, aiming to insulate the government from legal challenge, and pushback on the European Court of Human Rights’ influence within the UK. This event is a chance to hear from experts discussing the Consultation’s proposals and envisaging what a ‘Modern Bill of Rights’ for the twenty-first century might look like.

Speakers

  • Dr Ed Bates, Leicester Law School, University of Leicester.
  • Professor Merris Amos, Professor of Human Rights Law, Queen Mary, University of London.
  • Dr Lewis Graham, Law Fellow at Wadham College, Oxford.
  • Dr Kasey McCall-Smith, Senior Lecturer in Public International Law, University of Edinburgh Law School.

Details

Open to: All

Date and time: 26 January 2022, 5–7pm

Venue: Online

Contacted.bates@leicester.ac.uk

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Book launch: The emergent African Union Law: Conceptualization, delimitation, and application, 26 January 2022

Written by members of the African Union Law Research Network, the book discloses the work and organisation of the Union.

The book is written by members of the African Union Law Research Network and advances the conversation on the norm generating aspects of the work of the AU, its organs, and its institutions. The book covers a broad spectrum of aspects of AU law, including harmonisation and integration, human rights, peace and security, intellectual property, customary law, statelessness, terrorism, taxation, land management, sustainable development, dispute resolution, business enterprises, competition law, taxation, intellectual property, financial institutions, and consumer protection. The book is published by Oxford University Press.

Ambassador Negm, the African Union’s Legal Counsel will be the keynote speaker at the launch event hosted by the International Law and Policy in Africa Network (ILPAN) and the Centre for European Law and Internationalisation (CELI).

Details

Open to: All

Date and time: 26 January 2022, 12.30–2.00pm (UK time)

Venue: online

Contact: eki.omorogbe@leicester.ac.uk

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No more Blackface: The trial of Black Pete, 15 December 2021

The first event of the CELI Annual Lecture Series 2021-2022 will take place on 15 December 2021, 4.00-6.00pm via Teams Live. Speaker: Dr Frank King.

The feast of St. Nicholas, a Father Christmas-style figure, is widely celebrated in The Netherlands, as it is in a number of other European countries. In the last decade, the character of Black Pete, St. Nicholas’ servant, has been the target of a successful anti-racism campaign. Black Pete is traditionally impersonated by white people wearing blackface. Frank King was the lawyer representing anti-Black Pete activists in the Amsterdam Administrative Court in 2014. At the centre of the legal challenge was the licence which the city of Amsterdam had issued for the 2013 St Nicholas parade. In this lecture, Dr King will discuss his experiences and reflect on the role of the court case in ending the blackface tradition.

Details

Open to: All

Date and time: 1 December 2021, 4.00-6.00pm

Venue: Online

Contact: Dr Lieve Gies

Prestigious UKRI grant awarded for critical COVID-19 research

Dr Lieve Gies (School of Media, Communication and Sociology) has been awarded a UKRI Emergency Route for Time-critical COVID-19 Research grant by the ESRC.

University students are high-risk spreaders of COVID-19. Effective delivery of vaccines to this population group is essential for the intertwined goals of preventing disease cases, breaking transmission cycles and economic recovery. Delivery of effective student-centred COVID-19 vaccine campaigns will require a clear understanding of how different student groups perceive COVID-19 vaccines. This study, led by Professor Chris Bayliss (Department of Genetics) and Dr Lieve Gies (School of Media, Communication and Sociology), aims to develop informed recommendations for these campaigns by examining the importance of convenient vaccine delivery and whether differing pandemic experiences (including experiences of harassment and hate speech) negatively or positively impact on students’ decisions relating to vaccine uptake.

As part of the research project, there will be a large survey of University of Leicester students, followed by one-to-one semi-structured interviews with up to 80 participants. Interviews will focus on experiences of disease, lockdowns, hate crimes, nationalism and media coverage of the pandemic. The University of Leicester provides an ideal case study. The University is located in one of the cities worst affected by COVID-19. More importantly, it has an exceptionally diverse student population (with more than 50% of its students from BAME backgrounds) and boasts a vibrant international student community.

AI for fundamental Rights at Work: Is the EC's Proposal on a European Approach to AI Up to It?, 10 June 2021

Dr Phoebe V Moore (School of Business, University of Leicester) will present a research paper on ‘Theorising Occupational and Subjective AI’.

When writing the description of the event for the web, the most important information comes first:

AI fundamental Rights at Work: Is the EC's Proposal on a European Approach to AI Up to It? is organized and chaired by Vincenzo Pietrogiovanni, Lund University and contains two sessions, one on ‘A European Approach to AI’, and one called ‘AI, Labour Law and the Proposal’. The event is intended to open debates on the recent European Commission draft regulation on AI.

Dr Moore’s thesis for her research presentation involves an investigation of machinic subjection seen in transformations in human computer [employment] interaction. Human resource professionals and management are integrating innovative technologies into workplace/space decision-making via ‘people analytics’, and Dr Moore asks to what extent these processes can be meaningfully regulated given the tensions in concepts such as consent, inference, function creep, inviolability and command as well as evidence of misuse and discrimination already emerging.

Details

Date and time: 10 June 14.00 – 18.00  

Venue: online

Contact: Dr Phoebe Moore pm358@leicester.ac.uk

20th anniversary of the entry into force of the Constitutive Act of the African Union, 26 May 2021

Dr Eki Omorogbe (Leicester Law School) gave a talk on occasion of a webinar organised by the African Union Commission to mark the twentieth Anniversary of the entry into force of its Constitutive Act.

The panel included talks by Ambassador Namira Ngem, Legal Counsel of the African Union and Dr Solomon Dersso, Chairperson of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights. The webinar was moderated by Makane Moise Mbengue, Professor of International Law and Director of the Department of International Law and International Organization at the University of Geneva.

Details

Date and time: 26 May 2021 – 15:00 – 18:00

Venue: online

Contact: eki.omorogbe@leicester.ac.uk

Assassination, Necropolitics and International Law: Global Inequality and Violence, 4 March 2021

This seminar will host three scholars and experts on violence in the international legal order: Professor Agnes Callamard, UN Special Rapporteur on Extra-Judicial, Summary and Arbitrary Executions and Director of Columbia University’s Global Freedom of Expression Project; Professor Kevin Jon Heller, Professor of International Law and Security, University of Copenhagen; and Assistant Professor Noura Erakat, Department of Africana Studies, Rutgers University, USA.

The panel will discuss assassinations in the current international legal order, whether there is a growing number of illegal killings permitted by international law; the problem of remedies for assassinations; the role of geo-politics and necropolitics in thinking about the causes and motivations for assassinations, as well as how assassinations have been treated historically.

In line with the “thinking outside the box” approach of this lecture series, the panel will not be constrained in their thinking and discussion by traditional language and frameworks of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) or the Laws of Armed Conflict (LOAC).

Whether it is in the context of occupation, freedom of speech, international human rights, indigenous activism to prevent resource extraction, labour and union activism, journalism, questions concerning the role of assassinations in the international legal order, and the necropolitics and geopolitics attached to these, will be explored.

Details

Date and time: Thursday, 4 March 2021, 18:00-19:30 (GMT)

Venue: Online

Booking not required

Contact: Dr Vidya Kumar and Dr Paolo Vargiu.

How might MPs scrutinies the new UK-EU relationship?

Prof. Adam J. Cygan has published an Insight for the House of Commons Library addressing scrutiny issues around the UK-EU TCA. 

This Insight explores how MPs might scrutinise the implementation of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) and the UK-EU Withdrawal Agreement, taking into account that the UK is no longer bound by EU law and that the post-Brexit scrutiny needs different arrangements.

Feeding Global Inequality, 28 January 2021

The seminar will host three scholars: Michael Fakhri, (University of Oregon School of Law and UN Special Rapporteur on right to food), Nadia Lambek (University of Toronto), and Luis Eslava (Kent Law School).

The panel will discuss the forms of inequality caused by issues of food and resource distribution in the global international order. The right to adequate food and nourishment is a long-standing international human right and, in spite of its apparent specialism, it is closely connected to the right to life and dignity and the possibility to enjoy a wide range of fundamental rights. The unequal distribution and exploitation of resources, however, makes access to food a struggle for many people in different countries and regions, in spite of the constitutional rights, national laws and policies, and international programmes aimed at achieving a sustainable redistribution of resources. Our panellists will share their insights and their unique perspectives with the audience in the conversational setting that characterises this year's edition of the CELI Peace Talks.

Details

Date and time: Thursday, 28 January 2021, 18:00-19:30 (GMT)

Venue: Online

Contact: convenors, Dr Vidya Kumar and Dr Paolo Vargiu.

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