Global Justice - NOTE: the course is cancelled in the autumn semester 2019

Course content

The issues labeled under the concept “Global Justice” play a fundamental role in contemporary legal and political systems. The course explores from the constitutional, public international and legal theory perspectives areas of human existence where there are great disparities around the globe.


The course is divided methodologically in three segments to provide a broad view to the student of the major considerations and topics related to global justice. Part one (“On general considerations”) make up a theoretical baseline of the definition and methodology of Global Justice. Part two (“Major Themes on Global Justice”) defines and debates the selection of issues related to the course. We pay special attention to the issue from a European Union perspective. Part three deals with the discussion and elaboration of European proposals to implement global justice legal policies. The following questions will shape this inquiry and will orient the main goals:

  • What is justice? Why might it be global in character?
  • Are states necessary for the achievement of global justice?
  • What role can the European Union play in this topic?
  • Does the Global order harm the Poor?
  • Which is the national responsibility on Global Justice?
  • Is law enforcement alone enough to reduce human trafficking?
  • Can war be used as Punishment?
Learning outcome

- Critically reflect upon the concept of global justice;
- Analyze the role of the States in the achievement of global justice.
- Identify and explain the relation between global justice and poverty, immigration, human trafficking, gender, climate change and military interventions;
- Put into perspective the concept of global justice involved in the topics analyzed;
- Think about the European Union responses to the question of global justice;

The course will consist of lectures on the above mentioned topics mixed with case studies. The learning method is very interactive and Socratic. Students are expected to prepare well for classes and actively participate in the debates on the issues under scope.

John Rawls. 1999. The Law of Peoples. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Reading: Amartya Sen (1999): Development as Freedom, Anchor. (NY).
Reading: Zygmun Bauman, Strangers at our Door.

Kevin Bales (2000): Disposable People, New Slavery in Global Economy, University of California Press, Berkeley.

Thomas Pogge (ed): Freedom from Poverty as a Human Rights. Oxford University Press, Who owes to the very Poor.

The language of the course is English; the reading materials are in English, but we will focus on legal conceptualizations and legal theories more than in language skills.

Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Type of assessment
Oral examination, 20 min.
Oral exam based on synopsis, 20 minutes
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Seminar
  • 69
  • Preparation
  • 343,5
  • English
  • 412,5