I teach Philosophy and Ethics at St. Philip's College in San Antonio, Texas, where I have implemented the "Exploring Humanitarian Law" program developed by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
The 2017 Advanced Seminar in International Humanitarian Law for University Lecturers and Researchers, was sponsored by the ICRC and the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, in Geneva, Switzerland.
How does the current humanitarian landscape look like? What specific sources can be relied upon to interpret IHL provisions today? Where do the ICRC and the academic community stand in the current IHL debates? On which topics is academic research focusing? How can university lecturers teach IHL in an original, interactive and practice-oriented fashion?
Organized by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, the 12th edition of this Advanced Seminar aims to enhance the capacity of lecturers and researchers to teach and research IHL contemporary issues, addressing both substantive and pedagogical aspects. Most of the seminar will take place at the ICRC conference centre, the Humanitarium, while some sessions will be organized at the Geneva Academy.
Profile of candidates
The seminar is addressed to academics holding a teaching/research position at a university or an academic institute. Candidates should have a very good knowledge of IHL and related fields of international law, and be motivated to improve and update their teaching skills in these subjects. As the seminar will be held in English, proficiency in this language is required.
The seminar will address specific topics, such as recent trends in the classification of armed conflicts, foreign fighters, counterterrorism and IHL, challenges in the conduct of hostilities in today's armed conflicts, sexual violence and detention-related issues, implementation of IHL in courts, but also IHL teaching and research methodology.
In the evening, participants will be invited to conferences reflecting on humanitarian issues currently faced in situations of armed conflicts and violence, as well as relating to the implementation of IHL. Several visits are also planned to help participants grasp the historical origins of IHL and how it is implemented in armed conflicts today.
To get a better sense of the content and format of seminar sessions, interested candidates are welcome to watch videos from the 2015 edition here and listen to podcasts from the 2013 edition here.
IHL substance, research and teaching methodology will be explored through panel discussions, debates, case studies, workshops, readings, research and visits. Sessions will be given by leading academics from Geneva and beyond, ICRC legal advisers and various experts. To foster interactions and debate amongst participants, sessions will be chaired by several speakers, who will provide different perspectives. Side events will also provide participants with informal opportunities for discussions with senior ICRC staff. Participants will be invited to keep in touch for further academic exchanges through a specific social media group.
Cost and expenses
A fee of 500 CHF is required as a contribution to the total cost of the seminar. This covers the lectures, seminar materials as well as lunch and dinner the first and last day of the seminar. Participants are expected to cover their travel costs to and from Geneva as well as accommodation during their stay.
Application process and deadline
Interested candidates should submit:
• a completed application form
• a curriculum vitae including a updated list of academic publications
• a cover letter explaining the applicant's motivation and expectations
• a letter of recommendation
• a short abstract (max 150 words) about a humanitarian/legal issue or theme they are currently working on
Completed applications should be sent electronically to the following email address: email@example.com.
Any applications received after 30th June 2017 will not be considered by the selection committee.
The number of participants is limited to 35. Candidates will be notified of the selection committee's decision by Monday, 31st July 2017.
Peace & Conflict Studies
Red Cross Training, in
I served on the Peace and Conflict Studies Committee. We engaged the campus in a wide variety of activities that stress the local, national and international aspects of conflict transformation.
Members of the the committee worked to integrate into their courses the Exploring Humanitarian Law Program (EHL) developed by the American Red Cross. The program is described this way:
"The programme is, above all, aiming to deal with
ethical and humanitarian issues arising in armed conflicts, and the main education objectives are to develop awareness of the necessity of existence of
humanitarian norms, to understand different perspectives and to encourage interest and the feeling of responsibility for local and international events.
These objectives are to be achieved by treating concrete cases, which serve as an incentive to formulate and focus on the dilemmas and possibly juxtaposed standpoints; finally, possible answers from the point of view of IHL are offered through debate."
After specialized training in EHL, our NVC team brought the program into the classroom this fall semester. For example, as part of our on-going support from the American Red Cross, we were able to tie our classes into a live "Webinar" hosted by Gary Solis, author of "The Law of Armed Conflict: International Humanitarian Law in War" (2010). Professor Solis is a retired Professor of Law of the United States Military Academy, where he
directed West Point's Law of War program for six years. Below are the slides for his presentation of September 13, 2012, and details of his textbook:
The 2012 Exploring Humanitarian Law Institute for Educators
Inspiring Educators at the 2012 Institute!
On June 29th, the American Red Cross’s Exploring Humanitarian Law (EHL) Institute for Educators wrapped up in Washington, D.C. More than 40 educators congregated for three and the half days at American Red.