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Independent yet Accountable: Stress Test Lessons for the European Court of Human Rights

Maastricht Journal of European and Comparative Law, Forthcoming

27 Pages Posted: 16 Aug 2017  

Andreas Follesdal

Pluricourts

Date Written: August 14, 2017

Abstract

An important ‘stress test’ for regional human rights courts would be to see how well such courts perform when faced with authoritarian, human rights-violating regimes that they are supposed to hinder or constrain. These states are not only subjects of the court, but also its masters insofar as they enjoy various forms of control and accountability mechanisms that may constrain the court’s independence. The article argues that, at least in the case of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), its precarious ‘constrained independence’ should be modified to enhance its impact even under such circumstances. Such changes could strengthen the ECtHR’s impartial and independent role without running the risk of turning it into a so-called ‘juristocracy’ - subjecting European states to the arbitrary rule of international judges.

Keywords: Accountability, Independence, European Court of Human Rights, Selection of Judges, Selection of Cases, Gender Bias, Professional Background, Role of Registry

Suggested Citation

Follesdal, Andreas, Independent yet Accountable: Stress Test Lessons for the European Court of Human Rights (August 14, 2017). Maastricht Journal of European and Comparative Law, Forthcoming . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3018779

Andreas Follesdal (Contact Author)

Pluricourts ( email )

P.O. Box 6706
St. Olavs plass 5
0130 Oslo
Norway

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