2023 Maymester in Geneva, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Florence and Rome

EUS 2260 – Migration, International Health, and Social Justice: Geneva, Amsterdam, Cophenhagen, Florence and Rome

INSTRUCTOR:  Professor Robert Barsky

Film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MMO19e_eO8 

In this Maymester, Professor Robert Barsky will invite students to study international law, migration, international trade, public health, medicine and human rights. We will have meetings with top officials from all of the major UN and NGO offices located in Amsterdam, Geneva, Copenhagen, Florence and Rome. 

In Geneva, the students will be introduced to the international legal and non-governmental organizations that uphold international laws, notably the Red Cross, the World Health Organization, the International Organization for Migration, the United Nations, UNICEF, the International Labor Organization, the World Trade Organization, Doctors Without Borders, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Office of Coordination for Humanitarian Assistance, and the United Nations High Commission for Refugees. Students will meet with high-ranking officials from those organizations, and witness firsthand the kinds of work that is directed from the Geneva offices.

We will then travel to Amsterdam and The Hague, which hosts many UN and NGO offices that are of interest for this course (https://www.government.nl/topics/international-organisations/multilateral-forums). Students will also be invited to meet with professors at the VU Amsterdam’s migration and Ethnicity unit. From Amsterdam we fly to Copenhagen, to work with researchers in human rights and refugee law. From Copenhagen we travel back to Amsterdam to pursue our work there. We then fly to Florence, for meetings with the International Organization for Migration, and UNICEF, IRC and the Innocenti Research Centre of the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund We will complete our work in Rome by returning to refugee and migration studies, and we’ll be introduced to the Joel Nafuma Refugee Center, the International Organization for Migration Rome office, the Migration, Asylum and Social Integration Center, IFAD, WFP, IDLO and other migration organizations in the country that is at the flashpoint of the current crises.

ELIGIBILITY: NO PREREQUISITES. The program is open to all students in good academic standing, and with consent of instructor

FEES: Fees include tuition, accommodation, breakfast, some suppers and lunches, a European train pass, public transportation in each city, tickets for a wide array of cultural activities and HTH health insurance.  It does not include regular meals, incidental expenses, and airfare (home-Geneva; Rome-home).

ITINERARY: The instructor will develop a common itinerary for students in this course. Students are responsible for their own airfare to and from Europe (home-Geneva; Rome-home).


Course Material will be related to international work such as:

https://www.iom.in t

Additional reading cases and the normative texts are available at: www.refugeelawreader.org as well ashttp://library.law.yale.edu/research-guides-10. Further cases and information are to be found at www.refugeecaselaw.org; http://www.columbia.edu/itc/hs/pubhealth/modules/forcedMigration/definitions.html

Jim Silk (Yale): https://www.openglobalrights.org/what-do-we-really-talk-about-when-we-talk-about-human-rights

Itinerary (many more details to follow):

Zoom days: May 8 and 9 (from wherever you wish).

May 10 Departure from your home to Geneva                                                              

Thursday May 11  Hotel Cornavin meet in the lobby of the hotel. There is no fixed time for arrival in Geneva, because students are arriving on different flights, but someone will be there to greet them when they arrive. If their rooms are ready, they can unpack and prepare for the day, otherwise the hotel will keep their baggage while students begin to explore Geneva

5:30PM Tour of Geneva with Sigi Muller sigi.muller@geneve-escapade.ch: “Nous sommes un groupe de guides qui guidons toutes sur les thématiques suivantes : Vieille Ville, Genève Internationale, Henry Dunant et la Croix Rouge ainsi que L’Escalade”.

7:30PM Fondu supper  7:30PM, Cave Valaisanne, central Geneva

Friday May 12

2:30 Geneva: WIPO, Lise McLeod, Head WIPO Knowledge Center. The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is the global forum for intellectual property (IP) services, policy, information and cooperation. We are a self-funding agency of the United Nations, with 193 member states. Our mission is to lead the development of a balanced and effective international IP system that enables innovation and creativity for the benefit of all. Our mandate, governing bodies and procedures are set out in the WIPO Convention, which established WIPO in 1967.

Saturday May 13         Bus Geneva-Chamonix-Geneva

La Petite aiguille lift to the summit

Group meal

Sunday May 14, 4pM Geneva, meeting with Guido Ambroso. Mr. Ambroso was appointed UNHCR Country Representative in Azerbaijan in July 2018. He has worked in the humanitarian field for over 30 years, almost exclusively with UNHCR in different capacities by holding senior positions in Uganda, Iran, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Azerbaijan (from 1995 to 1997), Somalia, Belgium, Tanzania and UNHCR HQs Geneva. Mr. Ambroso was brought up in Milan and is a citizen of Italy. He holds a B.A. in Anthropology and Geography and a Ph.D. in Geography, both obtained from University College London, University of London.

Group supper

Monday May 15        

Geneva 10AM: Passports required: International Organization for Migration (all day) Established in 1951, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) is the leading intergovernmental organization in the field of migration and is committed to the principle that humane and orderly migration benefits migrants and society. IOM is part of the United Nations system, as a related organization. IOM supports migrants across the world, developing effective responses to the shifting dynamics of migration and, as such, is a key source of advice on migration policy and practice. The organization works in emergency situations, developing the resilience of all people on the move, and particularly those in situations of vulnerability, as well as building capacity within governments to manage all forms and impacts of mobility.

Tuesday May 16        

Geneva 10AM: World Health Organization (all day) The Thirteenth General Programme of Work (GPW 13) defines WHO’s strategy for the five-year period, 2019-2023. It focuses on triple billion targets to achieve measurable impacts on people’s health at the country level. The triple billion targets are to ensure by 2023: One billion more people are benefiting from universal health coverage; One billion more people are better protected from health emergencies; One billion more people are enjoying better health and well-being; Measurable impact is at the heart of WHO’s mission to transform the future of public health. See how progress is calculated towards achieving GPW 13.

Wednesday May 17       

10am CARE tackles the underlying causes of poverty and social injustice in order to deliver lasting change in the lives of poor and vulnerable people. We believe that at its root, poverty is caused by unequal power relations that result in inequitable distribution of resources and opportunities between women and men, between power-holders and marginalized communities and between countries. Poverty cannot be overcome without addressing these underlying power imbalances.

2PM UNICEF works in the world’s toughest places to reach the most disadvantaged children and adolescents – and to protect the rights of every child, everywhere. Across more than 190 countries and territories, we do whatever it takes to help children survive, thrive and fulfill their potential, from early childhood through adolescence.

Thursday May 18   Train travel: Genève – Paris Gare de Lyon – Amsterdam 8:29-16:40

NH COLLECTION BARBIZON PALACE, Prins Hendrikkade, 59-72, 1012 AD Amsterdam The Netherlands

Reservations +1 212 219 7607 Tel.: +31 20 556 4564



Train to the Hague’s International Criminal Court

  • 10:15    Arrival at the main entrance (Oude Waalsdorperweg 10); Registration and security check, followed by: Welcome
  • 10:45     Presentation on the Court and its current developments followed by Question and Answer
  • 11:30     Attending a hearing

Group meal

2PM Peace Palace Guided Tour, International Court of Justice

3PM Rachael Marie Perrotta, International Court of Justice: We could receive your group for a presentation on the activities of the Court on 25 May 2023 at 10m. The visit does include a Peace Palace guided tour, as they are not taking place at the moment.

Return to Amsterdam

8PM Performance of “Fifty-One/Forty-Nine” by Emma Evelien & Remy Tilburg, Theater Bellevue Amsterdam

Image result for "Fifty-One/Forty-Nine" by Emma Evelien & Remy Tilburg,


Train to the Hague

Thomas Spijkerboer (1963) is professor of Migration Law at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam since 2000. He has been Raoul Wallenberg Visiting Professor of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law at Lund University (Sweden) (2017-2020) and International Franqui Professor at Ghent University (2020-2021). He is one of the lecturers in the master’s track on International Migration and Refugee Law of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. In 2016, he was appointed as a member of the Koninklijke Hollandsche Maatschappij der Wetenchappen (Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities); in 2017 he was elected as a member of the Koninklijke Nederlandse Academie van Wetenschappen (Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Siences).

7:30PM Het Nationale Ballet + ISH Dance Collective: “Dorian”, The foyer opens 60 min. in advance Danstheater, Foyer 1 — Entrance A Balcony — Row 8, Seat 4 € 10,00 – 4th Rank – R. Barsky Ordernumber 4168867 Ticketnumber 21336151

Train to Amsterdam


3:30PM “Raw are the Roots”, Stichting Internationaal Theater, Amsterdam

Internationaal Theater Amsterdam


Monday May 22 Flight Amsterdam-Copenhagen KLM 07:20 – 08:40 KL1125

Arthur Hotel A NØRRE SØGADE 11, DK-1370  1920DKK

Meeting with James Hathaway, University of Michigan Law

Entanglements in Refugee and Migration Law: Celebrating forty years of the Nordic Asylum Law Seminar, University of Copenhagen South Campus, Karen Blixens Plads 16, Copenhagen S. The Nordic Institute for Migration & The Center of Excellence on Global Mobility Law

Day 1: Nordic Approaches to Refugee and Migration Law: Quo Vadis?

09:00– 09:30
Thomas Gammeltoft-Hansen – Professor and Director, MOBILE Centre of Excellence on Global Mobility Law, University of Copenhagen

Danish Minister for Immigration, Kaare Dybvad Bek (tbc)
09:30– 10:45
Keynote: Title tbc
Cathryn Costello, Professor of Fundamental Rights, Hertie School of Governance, Berlin; Professor of Refugee and Migration Law, Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford; Professor II, University of Oslo.
10:45– 11:15
Refreshments Provided
11:15– 12:30
Parallel Panels: Session 1
Approximately 4 parallel panels, with 3 presenters each and a moderator/discussant
12:30 – 13:30

Lunch provided
13:30 – 14:45
Parallel Panels: Session 2
Approximately 4 parallel panels, with 3 presenters each and a moderator/discussant
14:15 – 14:45

Refreshments provided
14:45– 16:00
Roundtable: Nordic asylum law between scholarship and practice
High-level panel bringing together legal practitioners (judges, civil society, and representatives of ministerial departments) with leading researchers on refugee and migration law in the Nordic region.
18:30 – 21:00
Conference dinner, incl. dinner speech
University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Law, Karen Blixens Plads 16
2300 København S

Tuesday May 23 Arthur Hotel A NØRRE SØGADE 11, DK-1370

Day 2: Entanglements in Refugee and Migration Law: Celebrating forty years of the Nordic Asylum Law Seminar, University of Copenhagen South Campus, Karen Blixens Plads 16, Copenhagen S. The Nordic Institute for Migration & The Center of Excellence on Global Mobility Law

Wednesday May 24 Day 3: Entanglements in Refugee and Migration Law

Day 2: Entanglemens of Refugee and Migration Law from a Global Perspective

09:00– 10:15
Keynote: Title tbc
Sean Rehaag, Director of the Centre for Refugee Studies and the Director of the Refugee Law Laboratory, Osgoode Law School, Canada

10:15– 10:45
Refreshments provided
10:45 – 12:00
Parallel Panels: Session 3
Approximately 4 parallel panels, with 3 presenters each and a moderator/discussant

12:00 – 13:00 Lunch provided

13:00 – 14:15
Parallel Panels: Session 4
Approximately 4 parallel panels, with 3 presenters each and a moderator/discussant

14:15 – 14:45
Refreshments provided

14:45 – 16:00
Conclusions and Next Steps
Flight Copenhagen-Amsterdam KL 1134



8PM Performance of Roco Roca, Amsterdam. In ROCCO/ROCCA, the spectator takes his place around the boxing ring, where dancers become boxers. And boxers become dancers. They challenge each other with striking punches, fast footwork and virtuoso tactics. In close combat, relationships are challenged and men and women look for each other’s extremes.


Train to the Hague

10AM: Role play game about the decision-making process within the European Union at our premises in The Hague:
https://netherlands.representation.ec.europa.eu/role-play-eu-decision-making_nl. Anne-Marie EEKHOUT, Europees Parlement, Directoraat-Generaal Communicatie, Liaisonbureau van het Europees Parlement in Nederland, Korte Vijverberg, 6, NL-2513 AB Den Haag, Tel: +31/(0)70 313 54 16, anna.eekhout@ep.europa.eu, www.europeesparlement.nl, www.europarl.europa.eu


2PM: Helena Eggleston External Relations Office, United Nations – International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals Arusha: +255 27 256 5376; The Hague: +31 70 512 5691 Email: mict-press@un.org
ERO coordinator: Helena Eggleston (#5691)
·       Arrival at the IRMCT at Security Check (Outside Booth)
13:50 to 14:00
·       General presentation, Helena Eggleston, Press Officer
14:10 to 14:40 (Press briefing room)
·       Office of the Prosecutor Presentation, Lena Pelic, Legal Officer
14:40 to 15:25 (Press briefing room)
·       Peek in the courtroom public gallery
15:30- 15:50 (Courtroom 1 public gallery)

4PM-8PM IDLO:  Arthur van Buitenen (he/him), Policy, Advocacy & EU Engagement Advisor: +31 6 1549 3303; IDLO | International Development Law Organization: Creating a Culture of Justice

Train to Amsterdam

Thomas Spijkerboer will present a book chapter on migration law in Europe since 1848 (& its colonial deep structure), followed by something on European externalisation policies as seen from the perspective of Niger, Tunisia, Serbia and Turkey, with master students too.

Saturday May 27  KLM flight Amsterdam (AMS) – Florence


Florence MGALLERY Cerretani Firenze RE

Sunday May 28 Florence MGALLERY Cerretani Firenze RE

European Union Institute, Florence, with Luigi Achilli is currently research associate at the Migration Policy Centre at the European University Institute. He holds an M.A. and a Ph.D. in political anthropology from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). He taught at Cambridge, SOAS, and various universities in the Middle East and Europe. His research and writing focus on irregular migration and smuggling networks, refugee studies, political engagement and nationalism in the Middle East, and the Palestinian issue. Ethnographic in approach, his work is based on extensive field research in the in the Middle East and the Eastern Mediterranean countries. His previous research on refugees and refugees camps in the Middle East has culminated with the publication of a monograph about the significance of the “ordinary” in the process of political self-fashioning in Palestinian refugee camps in Jordan – Palestinian Refugees and Identity: Nationalism, Politics and the Everyday (I.B. Tauris, 2015).

Group meal

Monday May 29 Florence MGALLERY Cerretani Firenze RE

9am: Florence International Organization for Migration (all day)

Tuesday May 30 Train Frecciarossa 11:33 Firenze Santa Maria Novella 13:05 Roma

Hotel Palladium Palace Via Gioberti, 36 Roma

Wednesday May 31 Hotel Palladium Palace Via Gioberti, 36 Roma

Food and Agricultural Organization: Alice Leone. Appia Antica Park (entrance on Vicolo di Sant’Urbano), the G20 Green Garden, including installations with 17 interactive Sustainable Development Goals cubes. Introduction to FAO, Sustainable Development Goals and their relationship with the work carried out by FAO.

Picnic lunch

In-person visit at FAO headquarters in Rome tour through FAO’s iconic and representative rooms, with discussions of the mandate, history, and art collection of the Organization as well as the Sustainable Development Goals and much more.

Thursday June 1              Hotel Palladium Palace Via Gioberti, 36 Roma

10AM IFAD Alessio Ambrosino Office of the Associate Vice President External Relations and Governance Department (ERG) Via Paolo di Dono 44, 00142 Rome, Italy
Mob. +39 3491258173 www.ifad.org

Friday June 2              Hotel Palladium Palace Via Gioberti, 36 Roma

10AM: WFP Library & Research Centre

NOTE: We also ask to send us a copy of each participant’s ID (both sides, in a single PDF document).

  • The participants will have to arrive all together at the same time (we won’t be able to let people in at different times);
  • The group will have to remain together during the whole visit and will have to strictly attain to all the indications received by WFP staff;
  • A list of all the participants along with the scan of a valid ID/Passport for each of them is to be shared with us as soon as possible in order for WFP Security to prepare in advance the temporary passes needed to access the premises on the day of the visit. The visit is scheduled to start at 10 AM: the group is required to arrive 15/20 minutes earlier.
  • The professors are kindly requested to contact the visit’s Focal Persons(@Francesco IAIZZO and @Eleonora DIONISI) when the group is approaching the building and to wait for one of us to meet you in front of the entrance. N.B. Please avoid starting the Security procedures before meeting with us;
  • The visit will last around 60 minutes from the completion of the security procedures, which will be approximately distributed as follows:
  • 15/20 minutes: visit of WFP premises;
  • 15/20 minutes: presentation about WFP;
  • 15/20 minutes: Q&A session;
  • Time for taking photos in the nicest places will be provided too, preferably at the end of the visit, if requested.

Francesco Iaizzo, Knowledge Management Consultant, Library & Research Centre – Knowledge Management unit, Innovation and Knowledge Management Division (INK), United Nations World Food Programme, Rome, Italy

Saturday June 3  The course ends in Rome: students can leave anytime that day, but it’s the last day for which they have hotel accommodation through Vanderbilt. They can return home from Rome, or travel further afield.