Resolution 2005/60 by the Commission on Human Rights directs UN bodies “to coordinate their efforts in activities relating to human rights and the environment”. Linking human rights concerns to environmental protection and development has been the core of the United Nations’ approach to tackling environmental problems. Building on the 1972 Stockholm Declaration, which recognized for the first time the relationship between human rights and the environment, the international community attempted to define the rights of the people to be involved in the development of their economies, and the responsibilities of human beings to safeguard the common environment in the 1992 Rio Declaration. The renewed commitment to integrate environmental and human rights protection have led to important progresses, such as the Human Rights Council’s creation of an Independent Expert on Human Rights and the Environment in March 2012. Various national and international agencies, including UN bodies, have further emphasized these important interdependencies in the Post-2015 Development Agenda (P2015DA).
Consistent with this commitment to integrating human rights with environmental concerns, UNICRI seeks to further examine the mutual impact of human rights and environmental protection on each other in its Summer School on Environment and Human Rights, organized in cooperation with John Cabot University*.
During an intensive one-week Summer School, students will be guided in critically examining how human rights guarantees engage with environmental protections, assessing international strategies and discussing the role of community rights at the heart of the environmental rights movement.
The Summer School thus offers an opportunity to deepen an understanding of the interrelationship between human rights and environmental protections, both in theory and in practice. Virtuous practices and critical examples will be examined in order to strengthen participants’ capacity to actively promote constructive public policies. To achieve this, the Summer School will cover the following areas:
The Summer School, which will take place at John Cabot University* (Rome, Italy), couples more theoretical lectures with roundtable discussions, dynamic case studies, and practical exercises. The faculty of the Summer School is composed by leading scholars and academics from John Cabot and other Universities, representatives of the United Nations system, international human rights bodies and the civil society.
In this unique learning environment, participants will have the opportunity to interact with international recognized experts, meet peers and build lasting professional relationships with young professionals and students from all over the world. This intense experience fosters intercultural dialogue and a deeper understanding of some of the world’s most complex and debated issues. To date, past UNICRI short courses and summer schools have gathered participants from many different countries, among which are, Afghanistan, Austria, Bangladesh, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Canada, Check Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Kenya, India, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Nigeria, Norway, Palestine, Poland, Santo Domingo, Slovenia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Togo, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
* John Cabot University, founded in 1972, is an independent, American four-year liberal arts university offering undergraduate degrees and study abroad programmes to English-speaking students from all over the world. It provides an international and stimulating environment to the participants and offers a state-of-the-art learning environment, including a library, canteen, and accommodations.