12 Apr 2022

Between International Human Rights Law and Right-wing Populism: What Place for Social Rights? Part II (online seminar)

The Law Faculty of Maastricht University and the Maastricht Centre for Human Rights have the pleasure to organize an online seminar (in two parts) to celebrate the Theo van Boven Human Rights Prize awarded to dr. Eduardo Arenas Catalán.

This seminar will address questions of populism and human rights. Populism has been mostly theorized in juxtaposition to constitutional democracy and international human rights law. Motivated by the need to provide answers to the challenge of far-right and authoritarian forms of populism, this seminar seeks to expand the analysis beyond the better-documented authoritarian forms of populism. Following the work of Bojan Bugaric, this seminar is dedicated to explore progressive and socio-economic forms of populism. In particular, the seminar will discuss whether these forms of populism could be helpful or even necessary to articulate constitutional and democratic alternatives to the far-right. In doing so, the seminar will also explore the potential contributions of the current European project of social citizenship and social rights under international law.



The second part (12 April) of this seminar will look at non-authoritarian forms of populism, and discuss to what extent these can be instrumental to serving the goals and methodologies of liberal constitutional democracy and international human rights law. The session will be oriented to ask what shifts must take place within international human rights law (social rights in particular) to improve international law’s, decayed legitimacy. 

Programme on 12 April

16.00h Moderator: Prof. Liesbeth Lijnzaad (Maastricht University)
16.05h Dr. Gustavo Arosemena (Maastricht University): How to stop begging the question: A reflection on the relationship between populism, democracy and human rights
16.20h Prof. Bojan Bugaric (University of Sheffield): Could Populism be Good for Constitutional Democracy?
16.35h Prof. Aeyal Gross (Tel Aviv University): From Transitional Justice to Democratic Decline: In search of the economic
16.50h Remarks by Dr. Eduardo Arenas Catalán
17.00h Q & A