Funded by a Holocaust claims settlement award, the Cardozo Law Institute in Holocaust and Human Rights (CLIHHR) aims to strengthen laws, norms and institutions to prevent mass atrocities and strengthen human-rights protections.
Founded by Professor Richard Weisberg and led by Faculty Director Jocelyn Getgen Kestenbaum, the Cardozo Law Institute in Holocaust and Human Rights' (CLIHHR, pronounced "clear") research and pedagogy address all aspects of mass human-rights atrocities, including the unfinished business of the Holocaust, unique aspects of identity-conflict, the processional nature of genocide, the development of international criminal justice, the intersection of mass atrocities with forced migration, asylum and refugee law, and post-conflict governance and transition.
CLIHHR strengthens laws, norms and institutions to prevent mass atrocities, protect affected populations and rebuild societies in the wake of atrocities. An innovative “think tank,” CLIHHR furthers the theory and scholarship of human rights and atrocity prevention, while its “action arm”—the Benjamin B. Ferencz Human Rights and Atrocity Prevention Clinic—trains law students in human rights and atrocity prevention practice. CLIHHR has developed a three-part framework to guide its work: prevent, protect, and rebuild.
CLIHHR furthers atrocity prevention through its innovative projects, cutting-edge scholarship, public events, and the clinic’s legal and policy advocacy. Building on its legacy and continuing to honor the past, Cardozo is expanding its efforts to safeguard the future by addressing new challenges faced by the human-rights movement, responding with fresh thinking through new initiatives such as the Law and Armed Conflict, which explores novel approaches to scholarship, teaching and training in the complexities of law and war in the 21st century. The project looks at international law as it relates to the dynamic nature of war in areas such as state responses to terrorism, non-state actors like ISIS, and the new cyberspace battlefield. It also explores the growing role of private military and security contractors in war zones.
Collectively, Cardozo’s human-rights programs provide students with opportunities for active engagement in the most pressing issues at the intersection of law and human rights.