Summer School on Human Rights and Transitional Justice

Justice, Reparations and Development

The Hague, 13 - 17 July 2015


Welcome to the Human Rights and Transitional Justice Summer School page. The summer school focuses on a different theme within the field of human rights and transitional justice each year. Past themes included Truth, Justice and Rule of Law Reform (2012), Human Rights Fact-Finding, Evidence and International Crimes (2013) and Regional Responses to Conflict (2014). The theme for the 2015 edition is Justice, Reparations and Development


The relationship between human rights, transitional  justice and development requires fresh attention. While justice is increasingly understood in a broader sense, involving social, economic, cultural and legal dimensions, it is unhelpful to adopt a functionalist view under which area is treated as an instrument of the other. Justice actors are not development agents, nor are development actors necessarily best agents for accountability, truth or reparations. The different fields may conflict with each other. Making development assistance contingent on rule of law reform may be counterproductive, since it may create dependencies or discrepancies in relation to needs of protection or other more pressing socio-economic needs (health, education, access to resources etc.). Conversely, promoting justice through instruments of development may have significant downsides. As evidenced in the transitional justice context, awarding reparation through development programmes may leave victims with a feeling that their suffering is not sufficiently recognized. More work is required to identify how the mutual synergies between these fields may be used most effectively to the benefit of all of them. This is the central inquiry of this Summer School. It explores linkages, as well as tensions between justice processes, reparations and development.  


Themes covered include:

  • The interrelation between international criminal justice norms and institutions (e.g., Hague Courts and Tribunals) and development, including risks of ‘donor justice’ and potential biases (e.g., sidelining of socio and economic rights)
  • The role of criminal investigations and prosecutions in development strategies, and their impact on peacebuilding and rule of law reform
  • The nexus between complementarity and development assistance, and the impact of the work of the ICC Trust Fund in situation countries
  • Connecting points and legitimate divergences between development and transitional justice practices
  • The nexus between reparations and development, including development sensitive reparation strategies
  • International justice and sustainable development (protection of natural resources, environment).

Course Faculty

We are pleased to announce that the following guest speakers will lecture this summer:
  • Roger Duthie -  Senior Associate, Research Unit, International Center for Transitional Justice
  • Djordje Djordjevic - Rule of Law Advisor at United Nations Development Programme HQ
  • Matthew Gillett - Legal Officer in the Office of the Prosecutor, ICTY
  • Kate Orlovsky - Specialist in Human Rights, Gender and Conflict Studies
  • Professor William Schabas - Professor of Human Rights Law and International Criminal Law, Leiden University
  • Evelyne Schmid - Post-Doctoral Researcher, University of Basel, Faculty of Law
  • Paul Seils - Vice President and General Counsel, International Center for Transitional Justice
  • Marieke Wierda - Transitional Justice Expert
  • Pieter de Baan - Executive Director, The Trust Fund for Victims

Course Materials

Participants will receive a copy of the book  Transitional Justice and Development: Making Connections, edited by Pablo de Greiff and Roger Duthie. Other course materials will be posted on a digital learning environment (Blackboard). Participants will receive a Leiden University Network account to access the Blackboard site.

The participants will also receive a welcome pack upon arrival, including information about Leiden University and The Hague, the International City of Peace and Justice.


The participants 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.

Voices of the summer school

"An excellent panel of teachers. A great diversity & coverage of topics. A great diversity of views by speakers"

"The various backgrounds of the participants as well as their knowledge made the course much more interesting, not to mention the very high level of expertise brought by the speakers”

"Outstanding speakers, very honest and open"

"Excellent staff, assistants and food”

"Absolutely worth every cent. A great mix of famous and highly experienced speakers, well-planned program structure and variety of exposure trips/exercises. Highly recommended for Legal Advisers and human rights practitioners”

"What I really appreciate about this Summer School is the complexity of the Program, because it was very professional from an educational point of view and also good organized in a very enjoyable experience”

Course fees

Tuition fees for the 2015 session:
* Professionals €1100
* Students €900

The fee includes lunches and refreshments on class days, course materials, a thematic film screening, field trips to international institutions in The Hague, a welcome dinner and a farewell dinner at the beach. 

Please note that the accommodation is not included in the course fee and it will not be arranged by The Grotius Centre. Please visit the page of the Leiden University Housing Office to learn more about short-stay options in Leiden and The Hague.

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 apply by using the Summer School Registration Form 2015.

The deadline to apply for the Summer School is 1 June 2015. Fee waiver applications are accepted until 1 May 2015. The fee waiver awardees will be informed via email on 8 May. 

Please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any questions.


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