For best experience please turn on javascript and use a modern browser!

The maxim of Roman law, hominum causa omne jus constitutum est – all law is created for the benefit of human beings – has over the ages gained a firm foothold in western liberal democracies. The rule of law is one important institutional provision in this respect; human rights are a second. These approaches regulate the power-relations between citizen and government, but start from opposite ends of the stick. The rule of law expresses formal limitations to what a government can do, while human rights present substantial rights to which all human beings are entitled to.

Detail Summary
Date 10 July 2014
Time 13:00 - 17:00
Location Oudemanhuispoort
Room Venue: Oudemanhuispoort F201c (beware: updated)

This workshop investigates the (inter)relationship between the rule of law and human rights. Are human rights an integral part of the rule of law? Are these institutional arrangements compatible but distinct? Or are defenders of the ‘thin’ rule of law correct in claiming that the two are irreconcilable?




  • Opening by Marc de Wilde, chairman 
  • Roland Pierik: The Co-orginality of Human Rights and the Rule of Law
  • Brian Tamanaha: Democracy, Human Rights, and the Rule of Law in Liberal Theory: Three Distinct Forms of Liberty
  • Yvonne Donders: The International Rule of Law and Human Rights: Unity and Variety




15:00-15:30 tea


  • Janneke Gerards: The Relationship Between Human Rights and the ‘Modern’ Rule of Law from the Perspective of the European Court of Human
  • Rights Ernst Hirsch Ballin: Rule of Law in a Democratic Society Discussion


17:00 drinks.



Room Venue: Oudemanhuispoort F201c (beware: updated)

Oudemanhuispoort 4-6
1012 CN Amsterdam

Research colloquium, organised by the Paul Scholten Centre for Jurisprudence.


  • Prof. Brian Tamanaha is William Gardiner Hammond Professor of Law (Washington University School of Law).
  • Prof. Janneke Gerards is Professor of Fundamental Rights Law (Radboud University).
  • Prof. Ernst Hirsch Ballin is Professor of Human Rights Law (UvA) & Professor of Dutch and European Constitutional Law (Tilburg University).
  • Prof. Yvonne Donders is Professor International Human Rights and Cultural Diversity (UvA).
  • Dr Roland Pierik is Associate professor of legal philosophy (UvA).

For more information please contact Roland Pierik (

All participants are cordially invited for a reception after the event.

Attendance is free of charge, but due to limited room capacity subject to registration. Please send an email to Alexandra Welling ( to register for this event.