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International lawyers typically approach the international human rights system primarily as a legal structure, through its laws and institutions. In this RegNet Key Thinker Seminar, Professor Hilary Charlesworth suggests that, by contrast, attention to both the rituals and ritualism of the system illuminates its workings, using a case study of the UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review process.
Hilary Charlesworth is Professor and Director of the Centre for International Governance and Justice, RegNet, and Professor of International Law and Human Rights in the College of Law. She held an ARC Federation Fellowship from 2005-2010 and currently holds an ARC Laureate Fellowship. She was joint winner of the American Society of International Law’s 2006 Goler T Butcher Medal in recognition of ‘outstanding contributions to the development or effective realization of international human rights law’.
She has worked with various non-governmental human rights organisations on ways to implement international human rights standards and was chair of the Australian Capital Territory government’s inquiry into an ACT bill of rights, which led to the adoption of the ACT Human Rights Act 2004. She was appointed judge ad hoc of the International Court of Justice in 2011 for the Whaling in the Antarctic case.