Human rights-based approaches to development

HRBAD - 26 April 2023 from 9:30 AM to 4:00 PM – Register now!

A joint initiative of the Law and Development Research Group, University of Antwerp and the Flemish Interuniversity Research Network on Law and Development (law&dev)

Are you ready to dive into the fascinating world of human rights-based approaches to development (HRBAD)? Join us for the HRBAD Round table, where we continue our annual tradition of collaborating with the Flemish Interuniversity Research Network on Law and Development (law&dev). We have a line-up of leading experts who will share their valuable HRBAD experiences and offer insights into student presentations. You'll hear students from the University of Antwerp LLM Sustainable Development and Global Justice module present their arguments on hotly debated topics such as balancing rights, social and environmental concerns, deep inequality, and companies as duty-bearers. As an attendee, you'll have the chance to meet fellow researchers, engage with the students, and learn more about HRBADs. Don't miss this exceptional opportunity to expand your knowledge and be part of a dynamic community. Get ready for a day filled with thought-provoking discussions and networking opportunities.



9:00- 9:15 MEET AND GREET - WELCOME 9:15 – 9:30 INTRODUCTION – Wouter Vandenhole


Hasselt University 

• Overview by Stijn Smet 

• Presentation

    o Koldo Casla (Essex) and Marion Sandner (Hasselt): Solidarity and responsibility as a concept in economic and social rights law (co-presentation).

• Q&A and discussion

Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB)

• Overview by Stefaan Smis 

• Presentations

    o Shilpi Pandey (VUB) 'Decolonising the Discourse on Muslim Women's Rights - The Question of Equality, Emancipation, and Equal Citizenship'. 

• Q&A and discussion 

Antwerp University 

·        Overview by Deborah Casalin 

·        Presentation:

    o Hajar Azari (Tarbiat Modares - Iran): Child marriage in the era of Iran Islamic republic (ONLINE). 

• Q&A and discussion

11.00 – 11:30 HEALTH BREAK


• Overview by Stephan Parmentier

• Presentations

    o Mariana Lara Palacios (Leuven): Access to justice for indigenous women in post- conflict situations. A case study of Guatemala.

    o Ahmet Gumusbas (Leuven): The response of transitional justice to the displacement of populations.

    o Victoria Wozniak-Cole (Leuven): Healing from victimisation: Exploring trauma narration in human trafficking victims at the intersection of judicial and personal life spheres.

Q&A and discussion 

Ghent University 

• Overview by Giselle Corradi 

• Presentations

    o Gretel Mejia Bonifazi (Ghent): Assessing participation in transitional justice a case study of victim’s trajectories for redress in post-conflict Guatemala.

    o Sarah Kerremans (Ghent): Indigenous notions and practices on human rights accountability: a case study on oil violence and eco-territorial conflict in the Peruvian Amazon.

    o Shepherd Mutsvara (Ghent) ‘Economic refugees: an analysis of persecution and cross border displacement in the new global era (ONLINE).

Q&A and discussion

13.00-14.30: LUNCH BREAK in AGORA


Students will present their arguments in a role play to two policy makers or practitioners who are to be convinced of the adoption of a HRBAD/the integration of a particular theme in a HRHAD.

    Parallel sessions 1

13.45-14.45: G1+ G2: Balancing environmental and social concerns in a HRBAD (Marion Sandner & Michael Smith)

13.45-14.45: G3+G4: Addressing the human rights obligations of companies in a HRBAD:(Janet Sego & Antidius Kaitu)

    Parallel sessions 2

15.00-16.00: G5+G6: Addressing deep socio-economic inequality in a HRBAD (Marion Sandner & Michael Smith)

15.00-16.00: G7+G8: Decolonisation of HRBAD (with a focus on early marriage) (Janet Sego & Antidius Kaitu)

16.00: end

Practical information

Registration: Participation is free, but registration is mandatory. Please register by April 24th at the latest. To register, click here.

Venue: University of Antwerp, Kattenstraat 10, 2000 Antwerp (city campus map), Room S.KS.103 or

About the organisers

The Law and Development Research Group is one of the research groups of the faculty of law at the University of Antwerp. It unites researchers who study the role of law in enhancing human dignity and global justice between and within States in North and South.

The Flemish Interuniversity Research Network on Law and Development (law&dev) unites researchers at the law faculties of the Flemish universities engaged in research and education on the interaction between law and development, both within domestic societies and within the international community.