All roads lead to Strasbourg? Application of the margin of appreciation doctrine by the European court of human rights and the UN human rights committee

Yuval Shany*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

The present article seeks to explore the possibility that a gap exists between the perceived rejection of the margin of appreciation (MoA) doctrine by the UN Human Rights Committee (HRC), and its actual practice of employing substitute, MoA-like approaches. The existence of such a gap might be explained by the proposition that some aspects of the MoA doctrine are an indispensable element of international adjudication involving state conduct. It may also suggest that there are policy considerations which lead some international human rights bodies not to embrace explicitly the MoA doctrine or to downplay in their jurisprudence the prominence of similar deference-granting doctrines. Section 2 of the article surveys the application of the MoA doctrine in the case law of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), identifying three analytically separate prongs-application of law to facts, balancing of norms in the course of lawapplication and balancing of norms in the course of law interpretation. Section 3 then moves to discuss analogous legal moves taken by the HRC, while noting the remaining differences between the approaches of the two bodies. Section 4 concludes.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)180-198
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of International Dispute Settlement
Volume9
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.

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