Notes and Changes

Please Note: Change of Venue

This conversation series invited judges from a wide range of jurisdictions, including national and supranational courts, to address questions about the separation of powers in the context of their own jurisdictions. Issues explored included the legal and political factors that determine the role of the judiciary, the relationship between the judiciary and other institutions, and the concept of judicial independence.

Discussants for this event were Aileen Kavanagh (Associate Professor of Law, University of Oxford) and Jeff King (Professor of Law, University College London).

Video recording of Judge Paulo Pinto de Albuquerque - "Is the ECHR facing an existential crisis?"

Judge Paulo Pinto de Albuquerque has been a judge of the European Court of Human Rights since 2011. He served as a judge on several different courts in Portugal between 1992 and 2004.  Since 2015, he has been Professor Catedrático of Criminal Law at the Law Faculty of the Catholic University of Lisbon, where he teaches Criminal Law and Procedure, Penitentiary Law, Public International Law, International Law of Human Rights and Philosophy of Law.

In a recent dissenting judgment in a Grand Chamber decision of the European Court of Human Rights, Hutchinson v United Kingdom (17 January 2017), Judge Pinto de Albuquerque addressed the question “What lies ahead for the Convention System?” (at paras 35 ff).  He suggested that in the light of the reversals by the ECHR on key issues such as the compatibility of the system of parole for those serving life sentences (at issue in Hutchinson), the use of hearsay evidence in criminal cases (Al-Khawaja and Tahery (Grand Chamber 15 December 2011)), the role of other international sources of law in the interpretation of Convention labour rights (National Union o Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers v UK (2014)), and the prohibition of political advertisement (Animal Defenders International v UK (2013)), “the Court is faced with an existential crisis”. (at para 35).

In this conversation the role of the ECHR as a regional human rights court will be discussed.

Note: The Centre for Criminology is holding a Lecture and Film Screening event featuring Paulo Pinto de Albuquerque, which will take place on the same day between 3.00 -6.30pm in The English Lecture Theatre 2, St Cross Building.