International Children's Rights

Frontiers of Children's Rights

The dates will be published in September 2015.


The Grotius Centre is very pleased to announce that the fourth edition of the summer course on international children's rights will be held at Leiden University in July 2016.

Professor Ton Liefaard, Professor of Children's Rights (UNICEF chair) at Leiden Law School and Professor Julia Sloth-Nielsen, Professor of Children’s Rights in the Developing World at Leiden Law School will coordinate the course.

Frontiers of Children's Rights provides a comprehensive children's rights course, which takes a close look at contemporary children's rights issues from a legal perspective accompanied by reflections from other academic disciplines, legal systems, local perceptions and realities.
Leading academic and professional experts in the field of children's rights, international law and other relevant disciplines offer inspiring and interactive lectures, seminars and excursions in and around Leiden Law School.

The classes will be taught in the beautiful premises of the renovated Leiden Observatory. On Friday the participants will visit the International Criminal Court in The Hague. Classes will be taught at the Campus The Hague premises that day. The week will be concluded with a dinner party at the beach in Scheveningen.

Course faculty

 The following academics taught in the 2015 session:

  • Prof. Ton Liefaard, Professor of Children's Rights (UNICEF chair) at Leiden Law School.  
  • Prof. Julia Sloth-Nielsen, Professor of Children’s Rights in the Developing World at Leiden Law School.  
  • Prof. Willliam Schabas, Professor of Human Rights Law and International Criminal Law at Leiden Law School.
  • Prof. Mariëlle Bruning, Professor of Children and the Law at Leiden Law School.
  • Prof. Jaap Doek, Emeritus Professor of Family and Juvenile Law, Former Chair UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.
  • Prof. Ursula Kilkelly, Head of the College of Business and Law,  University College Cork.
  • Monique Ekoko , Deputy Representative, UNHCR Representation to the  African Union and the Economic Commission for Africa. 
  • Ms. Tulika Bansal, Advisor, Human Rights and Development, Danish Institute for Human Rights.
  • Prof. Simone van der Hof, Director of Centre for Law and Digital Technologies (eLaw) at Leiden Law School.
  • Ms. Bep van Sloten, International Alternative Care Expert.
  • Dr Ursina Weidkuhn, Former Juvenile Judge in Switzerland & International Juvenile Justice Consultant.
  • Dr. Cynthia Chamberlain, Legal Officer, ICC
  • Rebecca Tait, Office for International Education, Leiden Law School
  • H.E. Judge Joyce Aluoch, Vice-President ICC

2015 Sessions

International Children’s Rights: Achievements and Challenges
Prof. Ton Liefaard and Prof. Julia Sloth - Nielsen

Monitoring and Litigating Children’s Rights
Prof. Jaap Doek and Prof. Ursula Kilkelly

Children in Alternative Care and Institutions
Prof. Mariëlle Bruning

Implementing the Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children
Ms. Bep van Sloten

Juvenile Justice: From Theory to Practice
Prof. Ton Liefaard & Dr. Ursina Weidkuhn 

Children in Detention: Bridging Rights and Realities
Prof. Ton Liefaard

Children and Migration
Monique Ekoko

Children’s Rights and Business Principles
Ms. Tulika Bansal

Digital Technologies and Children’s Rights: Privacy and Online Profiling
Prof. Simone van der Hof

Children and the International Criminal Court
Dr. Cynthia Chamberlain

International Criminal Law and Children’s Rights
Prof. William Schabas

Closing Lecture
H.E. Judge Joyce Aluoch

Special Features

  • * Workshops with UNICEF & Defence for Children International
    * Excursion to a youth institution
    * Field trip to the International Criminal Court
    * Canal boat tour through Leiden
    * Farewell dinner at the beach


The students in this course will receive a certificate of participation after completion of the programme.

Furthermore, we can issue a statement regarding the amount of ECTS credits we would assign to this course, based on the number of hours in class, preparation time and assignments, keeping in mind that 1 ECTS equals 28 hours of study. Your university can then evaluate this course and decide whether they will indeed award ECTS credits.

Scholarships and fees

The registration fees for the 2016 session will be announced soon.

The fees includes access to Leiden University Blackboard (a digital learning environment on which course information and the course reading will be posted), excursions, lunches and refreshments on course days, welcome drinks, a canal boat tour through the historic town of Leiden and a farewell banquet at the beach.


A limited amount of applicants will be admitted to this summer school. The course is mainly aimed at professionals, but advanced students are invited to apply as well.

The application form for the 2016 session will be posted in September 2015. 

Participants will be admitted on a first-come first served basis. 

A limited number of fee waivers are available for this course. If you wish to apply for a fee waiver, please send us a separate request in which you clearly state why you should be considered for the fee-waiver. 


Please note that the accommodation is not included in the course fee. Participants in the summer school need to arrange accommodation for their stay. The Leiden University Housing Office can assist in this matter. More information regarding short stay housing can be found on the Housing Office website.


If you would like to know how former participants experienced this course, please watch this video for an impression:





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