SOAS University of London

Centre for Human Rights Law

International Human Rights Clinic

The International Human Rights Clinic at SOAS was launched in the academic session 2007-2008; in the academic year 2021-22 it will be running for the eleventh time (hence, it will be Clinic 11). The Clinic aims to encourage an engaged critical consciousness that reflects on and works within the trans-national intersection of law, rights and social justice on briefs submitted by partners in the UK and internationally. For SOAS students, the Clinic aims to provide a dynamic and critical environment in which to engage with advocacy strategies and the tensions of the theory and practice of human rights, and simultaneously to provide the opportunity to contribute to the work of the international human rights movement through practical work with cases, policy analysis, and research briefs.

For our Project Partners, the Clinic provides a resource of highly motivated postgraduate student researchers and advocates drawing on the extensive research facilities of the School and the wider University of London. Project Partners have included a range of human rights organisations but also law firms with human rights specialisation and other institutional partners with particular pro bono research needs to which Clinic teams have been able to respond. (See further: Introduction for Project Partners). In the year  2018-19, the Clinic Convenor, Professor Lynn Welchman, was joint winner of the SOAS Director’s Award for Inspirational Teaching for her work on the Clinic.

The Clinic is offered within the LLM Master of Laws and LLM Human Rights, Conflict and Justice; and the MA Legal Studies and MA Human Rights Law. Students participating are normally expected to have a familiarity with international law / human rights law, or to be acquiring such familiarity through other School of Law modules during their degree (notably, Foundations of International Law, International Protection of Human Rights). The Clinic is structured around weekly seminars and ongoing project work, and is not open to those auditing from other modules. Student numbers in the Clinic are limited; pre-registration on this module is provisional and does not guarantee you a place in the Clinic if there is greater demand than there are places. (See further: Clinic Introduction 2021-22).