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Judging Social Rights

January 10, 2013 @ 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm


and the

International Human Rights Program


Jeff King, Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Law, University College, London

Thursday, January 10, 2013
12:30 – 2:00
Room FLC, Flavelle House, Faculty of Law
78 Queen’s Park

Jeff King is a distinguished visitor this year at the Faculty of Law, teaching an intensive course on social rights. His discussion will focus on some of the central themes of his book, Judging Social Rights (Cambridge Studies in Constitutional Law). His book offers an extended argument about why abstract social rights to housing, education, health care, and social security should be part of constitutions. He argues that judges should be able to interpret and enforce social rights, including by striking down legislation, but should act incrementally, taking small steps to expand the coverage of existing rules and principles in a controlled fashion.

Jeff King, BA Hons in Phil (Ottawa) 1996, LLB/BCL (McGill) 2002, MSt (Oxford) 2006, DPhil (Oxford) 2009, is a Senior Lecturer at the Faculty of Laws University College London, where he teaches public law, human rights, and legal and constitutional theory. He is Co-Editor of the journal Current Legal Problems. Previously, he was a Fellow and Tutor in law at Balliol College, and CUF Lecturer for the Faculty of Law, University of Oxford (2008-2011), a Research Fellow at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, Oxford (2008-2010), a Research Fellow and Tutor in public law at Keble College, Oxford (2007-08), and an attorney at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP in New York City (2003-04). His research and teaching broadly examines doctrinal, theoretical and empirical aspects of comparative public law. He has published articles on the justiciability of resource allocation, judicial restraint, complexity in adjudication, the function of constitutions, the value of legal accountability, proportionality in administrative law, odious debt in international law, and a monograph setting out the case for constitutional social rights and a theory of adjudication in respect of them.

For more workshop information and a copy of the draft paper, please contact Nadia Gulezko at


January 10, 2013
12:30 pm - 2:00 pm