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Judge Robert Spano: The future of the European Court of Human Rights

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Middlesex University London

The Burroughs

Room C219-20, 2nd Floor, College Building

London

NW4 4BT

United Kingdom

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Judge Robert Spano, the judge at the European Court of Human Rights elected in respect of Iceland, will give a lecture at Middlesex University on Friday 6 October, debating the historical development and future of the Court as it confronts a host of challenges.

Judge Spano will focus in particular on the concept of subsidiarity and the Court's interpretation of qualified rights (such as the right to freedom of expression and freedom of thought, conscience and religion). In respect of qualified rights, he will argue for the need to 'de-juridify' the concept of human rights, as the sole monopoly of legal elites and professionals, including international judges, thus allowing human rights to be increasingly the project of the people through their elected representatives. This argument will be explored taking account of theories in the political sciences and political philosophy, in particular the distinction often made between legal and political constitutionalism. Judge Spano will reflect on whether, on the basis of this normative conception of subsidiarity, the methodological principles in the Court’s case-law, in particular the benchmark test of proportionality and the margin of appreciation, will need to be re-adjusted in the future in the interpretation and application of qualified rights.

Refreshments will be served from 5.30 p.m. and the lecture will start at 6 p.m, room tbc.

Judge Spano's term of office began on 1 November 2013. In May 2017, he was elected President of Section II of the Court. Before being elected, Judge Spano served provisionally as Parliamentary Ombudsman of Iceland and Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Law, University of Iceland. Judge Spano is a graduate of Oxford University.

Please contact Christiana Rose c.rose@mdx.ac.uk for admin or a.donald@mdx.ac.uk for logistics.

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Middlesex University London

The Burroughs

Room C219-20, 2nd Floor, College Building

London

NW4 4BT

United Kingdom

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