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Between 22 and 23 September 2023, the Academy for European Human Rights Protection hosted the AjV-DGIR conference entitled “Progress and International Law: A Cursed Relationship.” The conference subscribed to a long history of the activities of the Working Group of Young Scholars in Public International Law – the AjV. The unique feature of these conferences is bringing together young and established scholars to discuss an innovative and challenging topic in a direct exchange.

This year was no different – the conference participants heard the presentations by fifteen young researchers and the comments by fifteen established scholars. Over two days, five panels discussed the relationship between progress and time, challenged the paradigms of progress, questioned the link between progress and human rights, traced the operation of the notion of progress in the Anthropocene and focused on the association between progress and power. The conference's patron Prof. Dr. Angelika Nußberger opened and closed the conference with her remarks.

Judge Prof. Dr. Hilary Charlesworth delivered the conference’s keynote speech "Searching for Progress in International Law", which you can watch, as part of Völkerrechtsblog symposium, here.

The Fritz Thyssen Stiftung offered crucial and generous funding for the conference. Other partners and sponsors included: Academy for European Human Rights Protection, University of Cologne, German Society of International Law, Luther Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH, Osborne Clarke, Seidl-Hohenveldern-Verein zur Förderung der Völkerrechtswissenschaft, Verein zur Förderung der Rechtswissenschaft der Universität zu Köln, Völkerrechtsblog, Duncker & Humblot GmbH, Springer Nature Group, Nomos Verlagsgesellschaft.

The organising team of the conference was composed of Dr. Paula Fischer, Alexander Holzer, Rebecca Kruse, Lisa Kujus, Dr. Júlia Miklasová, Jasper Mührel, Lorenz Wielenga, and Sara Wissmann.