Human Rights at a Crossroads? What next for the international human rights system


Please join the World Justice Project and the American Society of International Law for a discussion of what ails the human rights movement today and how the international human rights system should respond.

The international human rights agenda has come under attack from critics both outside and inside the system. While it has proven largely effective in establishing new norms over decades of development and contestation, some worry it has become too broad and diffuse to have real traction, particularly in an era of rising nationalism and majoritarian populism. The United States, for example, a leader in crafting the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, has recently established a Commission on Unalienable Rights to provide “fresh thinking about human rights discourse where such discourse has departed from our nation’s founding principles of natural law and natural rights.”

Prof. Hurst Hannum proposed an approach rooted in international legal principles in his new book Rescuing Human Rights: A Radically Moderate Approach, that he believes may be the better way to shore up international human rights compliance. He will be joined by experts from both sides of the spectrum for a discussion on what the response to ongoing challenges to the human rights system should be


  • Elizabeth Andersen (moderator), Executive Director at the World Justice Project.
  • Hurst Hannum, Professor of International Law, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University
  • Sarah Mendelson, Distinguished Service Professor Of Public Policy And Head Of Heinz College In Washington, DC
  • Mark Bromley, Council Chair, The Council for Global Equality

Lunch will be included.

Date and Location

Thursday, October 31, 2019 - 12:30pm to 2:00pm
American Society of International Law
Address 1: 
2223 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Zip Code: