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2020 Dates

13-14 March 2020, at the Swedish Research Institute in Istanbul (SRII), Şahkulu, İstiklal Cd No 247, 34321 Beyoğlu, İstanbul, Turkey

About the course

This two-day short course places the Palestinian refugee case study within the broader context of the international human rights regime. It examines, within a human rights framework, the policies and practices of Middle Eastern states as they impinge upon Palestinian refugees. Through a mix of lectures, working group exercises and interactive sessions, participants engage actively and critically with the contemporary debates in international law and analyse the specific context of Palestinian refugees in the Middle East (Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, the West Bank, Gaza and Israel).

The short course commences with the background of the Palestinian refugee crisis, with special attention to the socio-political historical context and legal status of Palestinian refugees in the region. This is followed by a careful examination of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights including its philosophical underpinnings and ensuing human rights instruments in international law. The key themes, which have taken centre stage in the debate on the Palestinian refugee crisis, are statelessness, right of return, repatriation, self-determination, restitution compensation and protection. These themes are critically examined along with current discussions about the respective roles of UNRWA, UNHCR and the UNCCP in the Palestinian refugee case.

This course is suitable for: experienced practitioners; graduate researchers; parliamentarians and staff; members of the legal profession; government officials; and personnel of inter-governmental and nongovernmental organisations.


Dawn Chatty, Emeritus Professor of Anthropology and Forced Migration; former Director, RSC

Professor Dawn Chatty is a social anthropologist and has conducted extensive research among Palestinian and other forced migrants in the Middle East. Some of her recent works include Children of Palestine: Experiencing Forced Migration in the Middle East (ed. with Gillian Lewando-Hundt), Berghahn Press, 2005; Dispossession and Displacement in the Modern Middle East, Cambridge University Press, 2010, and Syria: The Making and Unmaking of a Refuge State, C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd, 2018.

Susan M Akram, Clinical Professor, Boston University School of Law

Professor Susan M. Akram teaches immigration law, comparative refugee law, and international human rights law at Boston University. She is a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center, Washington DC (JD), and the Institut International des Droits de l‘Homme, Strasbourg (Diploma in international human rights). She is a past Fulbright Senior Scholar in Palestine, teaching at Al-Quds University/Palestine School of Law in East Jerusalem.


Fee: £450. The fee includes tuition, lunch and all course materials. Participants will need to meet their own travel and accommodation costs and arrange any country entry requirements.

Instructions for payment of the course fee will be sent with your offer of a place. Your place will be confirmed once payment has been received. Offers are made on a first-come-first-served basis to suitably qualified and experienced applicants.

Maximum twenty-seven spaces, with three partially funded places available for regional doctoral students or regional NGO staff.

Applications are now closed. 

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NB: Following major changes to CPD requirements by the Solicitor’s Regulation Authority (SRA), this course will no longer be recognised as accredited CPD training. However, you may wish to take the course under the SRA’s new ‘continuing competence’ approach.


For all enquiries, please contact:

RSC Short Courses
Refugee Studies Centre 
Oxford Department of International Development 
University of Oxford 
3 Mansfield Road 
Oxford OX1 3TB, UK

Tel: +44 (0)1865 281720

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