Understanding Humanitarian Action

Understanding Humanitarian Action

This summer school provides participants with an understanding of the main stakes and questions in humanitarian action and contributes to building critical thinking.

The first week introduces the main concepts of humanitarian aid – including elements that should be considered (or not) when defining humanitarian action – and presents the humanitarian principles and framework in which assistance activities take place. Besides history, law and geopolitics of humanitarian action, we also analyse the context and the characteristics of humanitarian crises and the various types of responses.

Through case studies from contexts such as Philippines, Syria, Haiti or Afghanistan, the main operational challenges faced by international and national organisations will be identified during the second week. Finally, working on a concrete scenario during two days, participants will partially experience the tasks undertaken by humanitarian workers and get the opportunity to practically apply their newly acquired knowledge.
Overall, the three weeks allow participants to capture the complexity and diversity of humanitarian action.

Assessments are based on active participation and an assignment carried out during the two days. Upon successful completion of the course, participants are evaluated based on a group presentation on the last days of the two-weeks summer school (equivalence of 4 ECTS). Students wanting to acquire 6 ECTS have the opportunity to do so on the basis of a satisfactory take-home paper, to be written within a week after the end of the summer school.

Subjects

  • Humanitarian Action

Related Programs

International Cultural Heritage Law

The summer school is organized by the Art-Law Centre and the UNESCO Chair in the International Law of the Protection of Cultural Heritage of the University of Geneva, in collaboration with the University of Miami School of Law.

The summer school aims to develop the students’ awareness and general understanding of the main substantive themes of international cultural heritage law, namely: the trade in cultural objects; the restitution of stolen or looted artworks; the protection of cultural property in the event of armed conflict; the protection of the built heritage from natural and human-induced disasters; the safeguarding of the intangible cultural heritage and of the diversity of cultural expressions.

The lecturers will examine the legal instruments adopted by UNESCO and the United Nations, such as the ‘Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict’, the ‘Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property’, the ‘Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage’, and the ‘Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples’.

In order to offer an up-to-date glance at international cultural heritage law, the lecturers will describe its complex relationship with other fields of law – namely general international law, human rights law, and intellectual property law – and with the issue of dispute settlement. Moreover, the lecturers will provide an overview of the different ideological positions of the relevant stakeholders and of the risks and liabilities in the art trade.
Finally, the summer school will bring out the challenges to cultural heritage that emanate from new threats. To name but a few: reduced protection of sites and monuments due to lack of public money and political support; natural catastrophes; art forgeries.

The summer course includes lectures at the University of Geneva and at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), as well as one field trip to one Swiss UNESCO World Heritage site, either the city of Berne or Lavaux, Vineyard Terraces.

University of Geneva

8-10 Passage Daniel Baud Bovy

Evaluating Policy Interventions

Does welfare spending reduce poverty? Does the minimum wage destroy jobs? Does trade liberalisation increase inequality? Does development aid really help poor countries? Do longer sentences reduce crime? Policy makers around the globe are confronted with these questions on a daily basis and effective policy interventions can only be designed with good answers.

Measuring and understanding the effect of policies is now more important than ever in any field, from development to labour, from finance to education and beyond. The Geneva Summer School in “Evaluating Policy Interventions” offers students a comprehensive understanding of the most advanced techniques of policy evaluation through a powerful combination of theoretical classes and applied examples.

The faculty is a mix of internationally renowned academics and policy analysts working in the most influential international organisations and public administrations from around the globe. 

Equivalence of 3 ECTS

University of Geneva

8-10 Passage Daniel Baud Bovy

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