Advanced Training on Monitoring Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, 26 - 30 SEPTEMBER 2016, Geneva, Switzerland

Publish Date: Jul 25, 2016

Deadline: Aug 26, 2016

Event Dates: from Sep 26, 2016 12:00 to Sep 30, 2016 12:00

Objectives and Audience

This one-week advanced training course is designed to meet the needs of academic researchers, diplomats, government officials, lawyers, judges, journalists and other professionals working for international organizations, NGOs, National Human Rights Institutions or development agencies. Participants generally have experience in the field of ESCR and wish to broaden their knowledge on monitoring techniques and the role of Geneva-based UN mechanisms in implementing these rights.

At the end of the course, participants will be familiar with:
•    The different tools and techniques to monitor ESCR, including the use of indicators, human rights impact assessments, budget analysis and litigation strategies
•    Recent developments in monitoring ESCR
•    Methods for documenting violations of ESCR and techniques for presenting findings to different mechanisms – national courts, national human rights institutions, regional human rights bodies and UN mechanisms
•    Various mechanisms at the national, regional and international levels for obtaining redress and reparations for violations of ESCR
•    Strategies to build local and transnational advocacy policies and networks.


This five-day intensive training in English will be held at the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, in Geneva. We expect approximately 25 participants.

This training course will cover the following topics and sessions:

•    The ESCR framework: the scope of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and typologies of State’s obligations
•    International mechanisms using ESCR monitoring tools: the UN Human Rights Council, UN Special Procedures and the UN Committee on ESCR;
•    Most recent developments in monitoring ESCR, including the first decisions based on the Optional Protocol to the ICESCR, and the potential use of the SDGs to advance ESCR
•    Approaches to monitoring ESCR: violations approach, indicators approach, human rights impact assessments, litigation, budget monitoring
•    Strategies to build transnational and local advocacy policies and networks
•    Discussions with experts, including UN Treaty Body members;
•    Visit to a session of the UN Committee on ESCR;
•    Case studies and a role play activity based on a model session of the UN Committee on ESCR.

Training Methods

Participants to the training course will benefit from teaching methods that blend traditional seminar-type lectures, delivered by the Geneva Academy ESCR experts and guest speakers, with practical exercises and first-hand experience on issues such as the work of the UN Committee on ESCR or specific cases and country situations.Participants in the training courses are also offered a unique opportunity to network with Geneva-based practitioners, attend conferences featuring key experts, and interact with UN human rights mechanisms, including the UN Committee on economic, social and cultural rights.

The training team

The training is hosted and organized by the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights - a joint center of the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies and the University of Geneva - in the context of is Project on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.This project is a unique initiative that promotes the realization of ESCR through research, trainings, conferences, expert meetings and advice to actors involved in the implementation of ESCR. It is recognized internationally as one of the few academic initiatives in this field and as one of the first institution to offer, since 2008, trainings on ESCR.
The training course is taught by the Geneva Academy ESCR experts and senior professionals from international organizations and NGOs, including experts and practitioners from the Office of the UN High Commissioner of Human Rights (OHCHR), the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), the World Health Organization (WHO), UNAIDS, the European Court of Human Rights, the International Commission of Jurists, FIAN International and Waterlex.

Important deadlines for application

Application deadline for participants requiring visa: 26 July 2016
Application deadline for participants not requiring visa: 26 August 2016


The training fee for this 5-day intensive programme is 1530-Swiss francs (CHF). This includes tuition costs, course materials, as well as 5 lunches and refreshments during coffee breaks. The fee is payable once confirmation of participation has been issued.

Once your confirmation of participation has been issued, you are kindly asked to proceed tothe payment at the latest 3 days prior to the beginning of the training (23 September 2016). In case of limited availabilities, the first payments will secure the candidate's participation in priority over late payments. Failure to pay will not allow you to attend the training.

All participants are responsible for their own travel costs to Geneva, including Swiss visa fees, as well as for their accommodation (refer to section below) and dinners (approximately CHF 30 per meal) in Geneva. Lunch will be provided throughout the course. The organizers are willing to provide administrative support for obtaining your visa and information about accommodation.

All applicants must be able to cover the expenses of participation. The Geneva Academy does not offer scholarships or tuition waivers. 


Accommodation in Geneva is expensive. For this reason, we encourage you to: look for accommodation in student residences; start searching as soon as you are accepted into the programme; apply for numerous options; follow your applications closely.

The Geneva Academy can arrange the following accommodation:

  • Single rooms with private bathroom : CHF 100.-/night
  • Single rooms with shared bathroom: CHF 85.-/night
  • 2 lodges (one-bedroom apartment) : CHF 95.-/night

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