4 – 11 September 2010   print this page

Course directors:

Zvonko Posavec, Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Croatia
Bernd Ladwig, Free University of Berlin, Germany
Georg Lohmann, University of Magdeburg, Germany

Course description:

The annual course concerns several problems of human rights discourses. The participants come from different nations and bring in different disciplinary competences relevant for human rights theory and practice: The Course aims at an interdisciplinary debate between philosophy, jurisprudence, and political science, confronting them also with the insights and experiences of human rights activists from the region.

The topic of next year’s course will be “Social Rights as Human Rights”. As widely yet still not universally accepted, there are different types of human rights. Especially contested is the type of social human rights, for at least five reasons.

Firstly, social rights are often seen as especially demanding types of claims and not all states in the world dispose over the material resources needed for their full realization. This doubt can be underpinned by two assertions: a) claims regarding negative liberties are generally easier to fulfil than claims calling for positive action, b) the costs of realizing human rights must be approximately zero because otherwise a claim could not serve as normative standards of universal validity, binding all states equally.

Secondly, social rights might pose more serious problems of vagueness than other categories of claims. The criteria of fulfilment of the corresponding duties might be less clear in the case of social rights than in the case of other types of claims.

Thirdly, social rights might pose especially serious problems of identifying the bearers of the corresponding duties. Without clearly identifiable addressees, however, human rights would be mere “manifesto rights” (Joel Feinberg).

Fourthly, human rights should serve as normative standards in international politics that limit the sovereignty of states. In cases of systematic violations of human rights claims to sovereignty must be overridden by attempts to end the violation. In the case of social rights, however, many would argue that any sort of international intervention would be inappropriate for social policies belong to the internal affairs of any states.

Fifthly, the postulate of social human rights would seriously restrict the range of democratic decision making.

Even among those who accept social rights as a type of human rights, there is disagreement about their specific status: Are social rights only instrumentally justified, as necessary means for the realization of those genuine types of human rights as rights to liberty or rights to political participation? Or should we place them at the same level than the other types of valid claims?

The course will give room for the presentation of papers as well as for workshops especially designed to give students and young researchers the opportunity to present projects. Each director will invite excellent students to participate in the course. The language is English.

Course lecturers:

Ana Matan, University of Zagreb, Croatia
Stefan Huster, Ruhr University Bochum, Germany
Georg Lohmann, University of Magdeburg, Germany
Bernd Ladwig, Free University of Berlin, Germany

Work Schedule:

Monday, 5th of September 2010

Plenum 10.ooh – 13.ooh, Room 4, 2nd floor

Introduction: Bernd Ladwig, Nikola Petkovic,

Markus Kaltenborn , "The Protection of Social Rights in Public International Law"

Georg Lohmann, Violations of Human Dignity and Social Rights

Workshop: 18.ooh -20.oo, Room 4, 2 nd floor:

Eva Weber-Guskar, Human Dignity: Status or Value?

Andrea Rechsteiner: The Right to Physical Security in contrast to The Right to Subsistence

Tuesday, 6th of September 2010

Plenum 9.ooh – 12.30h Room 4, 2nd floor

Danijela Dolenec /Karin Doolan: 'Reclaiming the public sphere: right to education and right to the city protests in Croatia'

Nikola Petkovic: GENERATION H: Inter-generational Solidarity and The Mask of Public Interest: The Case of Varsavska Steet

Katarina Batarilo: "The role of education in a divided society: the case of history education in Bosnia-Hercegovina" (BaH)

afternoon: ca. 12.31ooh Trip to an island

Wednesday, 7th of September 2010

Plenum 10.ooh – 13.3oh Room 4, 2nd floor

Chris Neuhäuser: „Social Human Rights and Responsible selves “

Henning Hahn "Do Social Human Rights Fall Under a Feasibility Proviso?"

Workshop: 18.ooh -20.oo, Room 4, 2 nd floor:

Daniel Voelsen, "Going beyond Human Rights Minimalism? On Legitimate and Illegitimate Goals of International

Transitional Administrations (ITAs)

Andreas Oldenbourg, "Social Justice and the Right to Secede"

Thursday, 8th of September 2010

Plenum 10.ooh – 13.3oh Room 4, 2nd floor

Neven Petrovic, Equality of Opportunity and Personal Identity

Corinna Mieth: Social Rights and Individual Duties

Workshop: 18.ooh -20.oo, Room 4, 2 nd floor:

Thorsten Thiel: Fight for Your Rights!“

Susanne Schmetkamp From respect to self-respect: moral aspects behind social human rights"

Friday, 9th of September 2010

Plenum 10.oooh – 13.3oh Room 4, 2nd floor

Arnd Pollmann: Conditions of an unconditional basic income

Bernd Ladwig: Toward a pluralistic account of social human rights.

evening: 18.ooh: Party at the beach

End of the Course.