Call for Papers Regional Human Rights Systems in Crisis Wisconsin International Law Journal Annual Symposium



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University of Wisconsin Law School, Madison, Wisconsin


Wisconsin International Law Journal

Call for Papers

Regional Human Rights Systems in Crisis

Wisconsin International Law Journal Annual Symposium

March 31, 2017, University of Wisconsin Law School

Regional human rights systems have been heralded as one of the greatest innovations of the project of global governance. However, there are a host of urgent issues — of growing importance to social justice and human well-being — that pose fundamental challenges to the more developed regional systems, even as they make it harder for newer regional systems to develop. It is unclear, for example, how well these systems grapple with questions of economic inequality, climate change, migration crises and organized non-state violence. They are challenged as well by Brexit, the turn toward nationalistic ideologies, and other criticisms of globalization. In this Symposium, we explore how and whether regional human rights systems can constructively engage in these challenging times. We include not just the developed systems of Europe, Africa, and the Americas, but also the new and less judicialized systems of Asia and the Middle East. Taken together, the conference allows us to ask anew the question of what are human rights, and where do human rights inscribed at the regional level take us in the contemporary era.

Some themes that may be addressed include:

  • Political stand-offs in the more well-developed systems: Brexit, the European Union and the Council of Europe System, the Inter-American Commission in crisis; the African Union versus the International Criminal Court
  • The challenges of constructing regional human rights in Asia and the Middle East
  • The pros and cons of the state liability model in facing issues of migration; terrorism; corporate liability; transboundary harm, internet privacy, international crimes
  • Human Rights versus Buen Vivir, Occupy, religions, and other discourses concerned with social, political, and legal justice
  • Universal (UN-based) versus regional human rights protection

Submissions & Guidelines

WILJ invites submission of abstracts of not more than 500 words from legal scholars and practitioners in the fields of regional human rights and international law. The submission deadline is September 15, 2016, and applicants will be notified by October 10, 2016. Upon selection, the complete articles (an approximate minimum of 10,000 words) shall be submitted by January 15, 2017, for final review. Authors of articles selected at the final review stage will be invited to present at the 2017 WILJ Annual Symposium on March, 31, 2017, at the University of Wisconsin Law School, and their articles will be published in our 2017 Symposium issue. By presenting at the Symposium, speakers commit to publishing their articles with WILJ, and the final drafts shall be submitted by April 30, 2017. Travel (economy class) and accommodation will be covered for accepted applicants. Submission is restricted to papers that have not yet been published.

Please submit your abstract and your CV by the deadline to:

For inquiries, please e-mail Emmeline Lee at:

Publication Timeline

September 15, 2016 — Abstract submission deadline
October 10, 2016 — Chosen applicants notified
January 15, 2017 — Completed (but not final) article submission deadline
March 31, 2017 — WILJ Symposium
April 30, 2017 — FINAL article submission deadline

Contact email: