Professor Obiora Chinedu Okafor, Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, Canada will speak on the future of the UN human rights system.
Like the larger system to which it belongs, if we did not have the UN human rights system we would have to invent something like it. It has enjoyed many successes and serves important positive goals (many of them not easily realised). However, the system has always had significant in-built and external limitations, and been beset by many problems – some more serious than others. In our own time, the rise (consolidation?) of right-wing populist regimes around the world, the economic crisis that recently beset Europe and many parts of the world, and the continuities and discontinuities of the more familiar challenges to the multilateral world order, appear to have combined to produce heightened crisis within, and the need for some reform of, the system. What to do?
Professor Obiora C. Okafor is the York Research Chair in International and Transnational Legal Studies (Senior Tier) and a tenured Full Professor of Law at the Osgoode Hall Law School of York University, Toronto, Canada. He is the UN Independent Expert on Human Rights and International Solidarity and a former Chairperson of the UN Human Rights Council Advisory Committee. The General Editor of the international journal, the Transnational Human Rights Review, and editorial board member of a number of other academic journals around the world, he has held the Gani Fawehinmi Distinguished Chair in Human Rights Law at the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, and served as a Visiting Professor at a number of universities and institutes around the world. He was conferred the Award of Academic Excellence of the Canadian Association of Law Teachers in 2010 and the Gold Medal for Exceptional Research and Major Contributions to Jurisprudence of the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies in 2013.