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Call for Papers for the African Human Rights Yearbook First Edition

Call for Papers for the African Human Rights Yearbook First Edition

January 26, 2017 to January 31, 2017


  1. Background to the Yearbook


The African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights are pleased to announce the publication of the First Edition of the African Human Rights Yearbook. This joint publication is initiated in the framework of the complementarity relationship between the two institutions as provided by the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Establishment of the Court.

The Yearbook seeks to crystallise efforts undertaken by the two institutions in the recent years towards encouraging studies on the promotion and protection of human rights, and providing a forum for constructive engagement with academics and human rights commentators on the continent. 

  1. Themes

In acknowledgment of the African Union’s decision to declare 2016 Year of Human Rights in Africa with a particular focus on women’s rights, this first edition of the Yearbook will cover two main substantive topics:

  • The African human rights system: norms and mechanisms; and
  • The rights of women in Africa. 
  1. Papers

We are inviting abstracts for papers that will propose groundbreaking academic style contributions to the human rights discourse in Africa. Although the contributions are expected to take a continental approach to the issues they cover; country or sub-regional level case studies that are designed in the light of the overall African human rights system will be of great relevance. In so far as methodology is concerned, papers adopting multidisciplinary and empirical approaches are highly encouraged.

  1. Topic one: The African human rights system, its norms and mechanisms

The first limb of this topic is aimed at interrogating recent developments pertaining to the adoption, ratification, domestication, and application of the major human rights related instruments adopted under the aegis of the African Union, including the OAU Refugee Convention, the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child, the Protocol to the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Establishment of an African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the Protocol to the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa, the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance, and the Convention for the Protection and Assistance Internally Displaced Persons in Africa.

The second limb of the topic seeks to cover the operation of the three major human rights bodies that have been established within the system so far, which are the African Commission, the African Court, and the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child. Related papers may undertake to study the gains, challenges and prospects of the operation of any of the three bodies or take a complementarity approach to their concomitant operation. Papers aiming at adding value to the current implementation of the complementarity provisions between the African Court and the African Commission will be highly appreciated.

  1. Topic two: the rights of women in Africa

Under this topic, the call is seeking to receive papers focusing not only on the implementation and enforcement of the Maputo Protocol but also any contribution that takes a cross-cutting approach to the protection of women’s rights through a joint reading of all other AU human rights instruments which contain women’s rights sensitive provisions. In the selection process, special attention will be given to issues such as violence against women, gender equality, sexual health rights, women and political participation, women and economic and social rights.

  1. Submission of abstracts and timetable

Scholars, legal practitioners, and other persons interested in research are invited to submit an abstract on any of the above themes. The proposals should be of no more than 600 words to be submitted together with the curriculum vitae of the author and will include the title, a short description of the topic to be addressed, the methodological approach taken, and a brief overview of the expected outcomes of the final paper.

Abstracts should be submitted before or by 31 January 2017 as e-mail attachments to Dr. Robert Eno, Registrar of the African Court and Dr. Horace Adjolohoun, Principal Legal Officer Any questions on this call for papers should be directed to the addresses given above.

The selection panel will consider the proposals and inform only the selected authors before or by 23 February 2017. On acceptance of a proposal by the selection panel, the author will be invited to submit a full draft paper together with an abstract of 200 words by 23 July 2017. Upon review, the authors will receive comments, which they will be expected to incorporate and return the final paper by 23 August 2017.

Finally accepted papers will be published in the first volume of the Yearbook, which is expected to be launched in October 2017. The selection panel may decide to retain a paper for publication on any subsequent issue of the yearbook.

  1. Submission Guidelines
  • The submission must be original and not have already been published or submitted elsewhere.
  • Please ensure that submissions do not infringe other persons’ intellectual property rights.
  • Papers should average between 5 000 and 10 000 words (including footnotes) in length.
  • The manuscript should be typed in Arial, 12 point (footnotes 10 point), 1½ spacing.
  • Please, use UK English for papers submitted in English.
  1. Remuneration

Contributions to the African Human Rights Yearbook are not remunerated. However, in recognition of their intellectual work and the value it adds to the Yearbook, authors of finally accepted papers will be added to a database of thematic experts of the African Court and the African Commission. In addition, they will be involved in various relevant activities and events organized by the two institutions either separately or jointly.