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2016 Bergen Exchanges on Law & Social Transformation

22 Aug 2016
The Bergen Exchanges on Law & Social Transformation is an annual interdisciplinary meeting place for scholars who want to understand the interplay between law and social change. The lectures, roundtables and panels bring together scholars and practitioners from all over the world. Welcome

Ending child marriages: Not only a question of law

4 May 2016 | CMI Field Notes
The new Marriage Act in Malawi has been hailed for raising the legally prescribed age of marriage to 18, yet the truth is that there is no absolute minimum age of marriage in Malawi and that legal inconsistencies threaten the enforcement of the law.

Reduce judicial corruption and improve access to justice for all

26 Apr 2016
Corrupt judicial systems undermine reforms and are a major impediment to ensuring access to justice and human rights for ordinary citizens across the world, says a new report published by the United Nations Development Programme and U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre on 8 April. Titled, A Transparent and Accountable Judiciary to Deliver Justice for All, the report cites survey data suggesting that the public perceive the judiciary as the second most corrupt public institution, after the police.

Reality defeats good intentions: The power of religious leaders in Touba

27 Nov 2015
Legislation is a widely used tool for increasing the number of women in politics. But laws seeking to promote gender parity come short in facing the ‘sociological realities’ in Senegal, as the case of the holy city of Touba shows.

No magic bullets for reconciliation

17 Aug 2015 | Rwanda
When societies go from military dictatorship to democracy or from internal armed conflict to peace, one of the toughest choices facing the government in the new order is how to deal with past violence. Great hopes have been pinned on transitional justice mechanisms, but the anticipated positive effects of transitional justice mechanisms on the process of restoring peace or (re)constructing democracy may be too high.

Making remittances work against money laundering

20 Jul 2015
Hawala networks can be useful partners in the work against money laundering of corruption gains, rather than the obstacle they are often considered to be.

Violence against women in Afghanistan: Getting away with murder

19 May 2015
On 19 March, Farkhunda was lynched by an angry mob on the streets of Kabul. She had been falsely accused of burning the Quran. In a swift trial, four men were sentenced to death, eight to 16 years in prison. The Farkhunda trial is a statistical outlier. In Afghanistan, few men are punished for violence against women.

Covering up a massacre in Angola?

19 May 2015 | Will the international community take a stand?
In mid-April 2015, news emerged about the killing of nine police-men in Angola's Huambo province. The incident involved the police and members of Juliano Kalupeteca's "Light of the World" religious sect. In the following days, grizzling reports emerged of a massacre of perhaps hundreds of sect members. We do not yet know the truth. Angola's government appears to do its utmost to prevent knowledge of it to transpire. Will the international community remain passive?

Sudan after the elections

19 May 2015 | Sudan Week

Corruption hunters - investigating and prosecuting financial crime

11 May 2015 | Panel discussion
Norad’s international corruption hunters network meets in Bergen. Hear how they work to prosecute corrupt criminals.

Playing the Ethnic Card? The political game in Malawi

4 Feb 2015 | CMI Field Notes
The good (but not so new) news from Malawian politics is that some of the democratic basics are in place, making the somewhat impaired democracy keep stumbling on, writes CMIs Inge Amundsen and Gift Sambo from the field.

Researching the social dynamics of law  

21 Aug 2014
Law is increasingly center stage for political battles. Across the globe, people are going to court to claim their right to health or education, to fight for their right to engage in sex work or same-sex relationships - while others mobilize courts and legislatures to criminalize prostitution or homosexual practice.

Thailand: A Different Kind of Coup

2 Jun 2014 | Behind the News
The military has seized power under the banner of 'unity and harmony' to defend the constitutional monarchy. In the short term, they have won. In the longer run, the outcome is much less certain.

Prosecuting leaders for universal crimes before domestic courts

23 Apr 2014
Public event with Naomi Roht-Arriaza (University of California), Elin Skaar (CMI) and Harmen van der Wilt (University of Amsterdam).

Accountability for leadership participation in universal crimes and the role of judges

22 Apr 2014
How can we understand and ensure accountability for heinous crimes linked to power structures in society - including core international crimes such as genocide and crimes against humanity?

Homophobic lawfare in Uganda and beyond

25 Mar 2014 | BreakfastForum
Åse Gilje Østensen (Royal Norwegian Naval Academy) in conversation with Malcolm Langford (Norwegian Centre for Human Rights and Chr. Michelsen Institute) and Siri Gloppen (UiB/CMI).

Defying the international expert community in Afghanistan

20 Dec 2013
There has been much debate on whether Afghanistan's informal justice practices should be integrated in the country's official justice system. Who should decide such an issue? Local activists claiming that these practices violate human rights, international researchers arguing that they are an undeniable part of Afghan 'reality' or military actors claiming that informal justice is necessary to win the war against the insurgents?

The International Criminal Court: Global justice or unfair treatment of Africans?

27 Nov 2013 | BreakfastForum
Senior Researcher Gunnar M. Sørbø (CMI) and Professor of law Terje Einarsen (UiB) in conversation with Åse Gilje Østensen.

Changing conditions for fighting economic crime

30 Oct 2013 | Workshop
What constitutes an efficient criminal justice system? This international workshop with leading experts explores criteria for crime-preventive impacts through the criminal justice system.

Judicial Battlefield over the Right to Abortion in Latin America

30 Sep 2013 | BreakfastForum
Paola Bergallo and Rachel Sieder in conversation with Åse Gilje Østensen.

The basics of successful litigation

20 Sep 2013
"Litigation may be an effective means to secure economic, social and cultural rights," says Camila Gianella. As a result of numerous health rights litigations, the Colombian Constitutional Court ordered extensive structural reforms of the country's health system.

Arab Spring to Sudan?

25 Jun 2013 | From Khartoum:
There is an appetite for change. Discontent against Bashir is widespread. The popular sentiment rumbling in Khartoum is that Bashir will fall sooner or later.

M. Cherif Bassiouni: International criminal justice in the era of growing globalization

30 May 2013 | Marking the 70th birthday of Astri Suhrke:
M. Cherif Bassiouni an international United Nations war crimes expert, often called "The Godfather of International Criminal Law". Professor Bassiouni has served in numerous United Nations positions, including Chair of the UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry for Libya (2011) and UN Commission on Human Rights for Afghanistan (2004-06).

My right

18 Dec 2012 | Blogging from Cairo
The Egyptians are voting yes or no to their new constitution. Where are the fingerprints of Egyptian women?

CMI: Partner in Two New Centres of Excellence

12 Nov 2012
The Legitimate Role of the Judiciary in the Global Order at the University of Oslo and the Centre for Intervention Science in Maternal and Child Health at the University of Bergen have been granted Centre of Excellence. CMI are consortium partners.

Heading for trouble in Afghanistan

26 Sep 2012
With the support of NATO and the US, Afghan warlords are regaining strength. -The international community has chosen a dangerous path, warns researcher Akbar Sarwari.

Assessing corruption risks critical for success of REDD

7 Sep 2012 | Op-ed
Learning the right lessons from past experiences with corruption in the forest sector is crucial to prevent broad undermining of REDD+.

Caught between rape and adultery

21 May 2012
Sudanese women activists launch reform initiatives to bring justice to rape victims. Non-governmental and governmental actors alike advocate for change. -International donors should seize this window of opportunity and facilitate dialogue between different stakeholders in Sudan, says CMI-researcher Liv Tønnessen.

Constitutional protection of social rights: Comparative perspectives

8 May 2012 | CMI/UoB seminar
Roberto Gargarella, Octavio Ferraz, Sudhir Krishnaswamy, Jayna Kothari, Anneken Sperr and Henriette Sinding Larsen compare and discuss research from Latin-America, India, Norway and Germany.

Litigating their way to better health

2 Nov 2011
Litigating health rights does make a difference. However, it varies to whom. Court cases brought by NGOs often contribute to better health care for the poor. Other cases primarily benefit middle class people who have resources to go to court.

Litigating Health Rights

31 Oct 2011 | Book launch
Alicia Ely Yamin and Siri Gloppen, the authors of the new book Litigating Health Rights, opens the Global Health Challenges week with a book launch of their book on health right litigation in Costa Rica, South Africa, India, Brazil, Argentina and Colombia.

"Women's fight against violence and for justice in northern Sudan"

26 Aug 2011 | Student Scholarship
A scholarship is offered to a master student in social sciences, law or gender studies to conduct fieldwork and write a master thesis on a topic related to gender based violence in northern Sudan.

Bernt Hagtvet in conversation with Elin Skaar on human rights in Latin America

13 Apr 2011 | Book salon
Elin Skaar's new book analyses the connections between transitional justice and judicial politics. She explores the role of courts in shaping options and trajectories of post-transitional justice - and concretely the chances of criminal prosecutions for past crimes in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay.

Sorry for the inconvenience: Rebuilding Egypt

3 Feb 2011 | Nefissa Naguib blogs from Cairo:
Driven by solidarity and national pride, the Lotus Revolution pulled order out of chaos. By now the military chiefs know that citizens who took control of their lives and future will know how to do to it again.

Institutionalizing Protection for Internally Displaced Persons

6 Dec 2010 | Seminar
This half-day seminar discusses refugees and legal protection in countries in Africa, in Colombia and in Palestine. Professor César Rodríguez-Garavito from the University of the Andes discusses with scholars from the University of Bergen and CMI.

Gen Salva Kiir Mayardit public address

13 Oct 2010 | Public speech
Read the public address of Gen Salva Kiir Mayardit on his return from the official visit to the United States of America.

Mini-series on Latin America

12 Oct 2010 | Seminars
This autumn CMI will host a mini-series of lectures on the social and political role of rights and legal institutions in Latin America.

The Strange Alchemy of Life and Law

23 Jun 2010 | Video: Literary Salon with Albie Sachs
Detained in solitary confinement, tortured, exiled and eventually blown up by a car bomb. From an early age Albie Sachs played a prominent part in the struggle for justice in South Africa. Later in life he helped draft South Africa's post-apartheid Constitution, and served as a member of the Constitutional Court for fifteen years. Sachs talks to host Siri Gloppen about his life and role as a judge in the formative years of post-apartheid South Africa.

Courts and Power in Latin America and Africa

29 Apr 2010 | Book launch and lecture
Why do some high courts hold political branches to account and others not? What explains the judiciary´s strong or weak defense of rights? And what role are courts playing -or not playing- in strengthening democracy in Latin America and Africa?

Albie Sachs

15 Mar 2010 | Chr. Michelsen lecture:
Albie Sachs, Judge on the Constitutional Court of South Africa (1994-2009), and author of the book The Strange Alchemy of Life and Law, held this year's Chr. Michelsen lecture.

The Strange Alchemy of Life and Law

15 Mar 2010 | Literary Salon with Albie Sachs
Detained in solitary confinement, tortured, exiled and eventually blown up by a car bomb. From an early age Albie Sachs played a prominent part in the struggle for justice in South Africa.