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Prof. dr. Y.M. (Yvonne) Donders

International human rights and cultural diversity
Faculty of Law
Dep. Public International Law and European Law

Visiting address
  • Nieuwe Achtergracht 166
  • Room number: 10.22
Postal address
  • Postbus 15859
    1001 NJ Amsterdam
  • Profile

    Profile

    Prof. Dr. Yvonne Donders is Professor International Human Rights and Cultural Diversity and Head of the Department of International and European Public Law at the Faculty of Law of the University of Amsterdam. She also works as Commissioner at the Netherlands Human Rights Institute. She graduated from Utrecht University in international relations and has done her PhD at the Law Faculty of Maastricht University on cultural human rights and the right to cultural identity. Her research interests include public international law; international human rights law, in particular economic, social and cultural rights and human rights and cultural diversity. She teaches courses on international law and international human rights law and gives lectures on cultural rights and cultural diversity. Her publications can be found below under "publications".

    From 2008 to 2015 Yvonne Donders was the Director of the Amsterdam Center for International Law (ACIL). Prior to this post, Yvonne Donders worked as a Programme Specialist on human rights at the Secretariat of UNESCO in Paris. She is still a regular consultant for UNESCO and for the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. She is currently Chair of the Steering Committee of the Netherlands Network of Human Rights Research (NNHRR), Member of the Human Rights Committee of the Advisory Council on International Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (AIV), Member of the Editorial Board and Executive Editor of the Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights (NQHR), Member of the Board of the Royal Netherlands Society of International Law  (KNVIR) and Chair of the Advisory Board of the “Shelter City” project for human rights defenders.Previous memberships include member of the National Commission for UNESCO, member of the European Expert Network on Culture (EENC) and Chair of the Dutch United Nations Association (Nederlandse Vereniging voor de Verenigde Naties, NVVN).

    Research

    Research interests include general public international law; international human rights law, in particular the advancement of economic, social and cultural rights; and human rights and cultural diversity.

    Key Publications (see full list under 'publications")

    • “Sleeping Beauty”: The Right to Science as a Global Ethical Discourse”, Human Rights Quarterly (with Sebastian Porsdam Mann and Helle Porsdam) Volume 42, Number 2, May 2020, pp. 332-356 DOI: 10.1353/hrq.2020.0020
    • ‘Towards a Right to Cultural Identity? Yes, Indeed!’ Diritti Umani e Diritto Internazionale (Società editrice il Mulino, ISSN: 1971-7105) Vol. 12, 2018, n. 3, pp. 523-548.
    • “Cultural Diversity and Cultural Identity in Human Rights” in: Culture and Human Rights: The Wroclaw Commentaries (Andreas J. Wiesand, Kalliopi Chainoglou, Yvonne Donders and Anna Sledzinska-Simon (eds.)) (De Gruyter November 2016) pp. 23-32 [ISBN 978-3-11-044050-8]
    • “Balancing Interests: Limitations to the Right to Enjoy the Benefits of Scientific Progress and Its Applications”, European Journal of Human Rights No. 4, October 2015, pp. 486-503.
    • “The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights: Accessibility and the Right to Information”, in: Tarlach McGonagle and Yvonne Donders (eds.), The United Nations and Freedom of Expression and Information, Critical Perspectives, Cambridge University Press, June 2015, pp. 89-121.
    • "The Right to Enjoy the Benefits of Scientific Progress: in Search of State Obligations in relation to Health", in: Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy, Volume 14, Issue 4 (2011), Page 371-381, Springer Publishers, Open Access: J. No. 11019, Article No. 9327, (via DOI: 10.1007/s11019-011-9327-y and http://www.springerlink.com/content/xk66t30m93122853/fulltext.pdf )
    • “Study on the legal framework of the right to take part in cultural life”, in: Y. Donders and V. Volodin (eds.) Human Rights in Education, Science and Culture: Legal Developments and Challenges, UNESCO/Ashgate, December 2007, pp. 231-271.
    • Yvonne M. Donders, Towards a Right to Cultural Identity?, School of Human Rights Research Series No. 15, Intersentia/Hart, Antwerp/Oxford/ New York , 2002, 400 pp.
  • Teaching and Visiting Professorships

    Yvonne Donders teaches at the UvA Faculty of law the courses on "International Human Rights Law" (MA level), "Fundamentele Rechten [fundamental rights]" (BA level) and "Public International Law" (BA for PPLE), and she gives lectures in the courses "Principles and Foundations of International Law" (LLM Level) and Internationaal Publiekrecht [Public International Law] (BA level). She regularly gives guest lectures at Utrecht University, Tilburg University and the Rooseveld Academy in Middelburg, as well as at summer schools in Florence (EUI) and Rome (UNICRI).

    Yvonne Donders was Visiting Professor at Osaka University, Osaka School of International Public Policy, Japan (September-October 2017) and at the Faculty of Law of the University of Paris II (May 2008).

    International Human Rights Law Fundamentele Rechten
  • Memberships
    • Member of the International Law Association (ILA) International Committee on Participation in Global Cultural Heritage Governance (since May 2018)
    • Chair of the Steering Committee of the Netherlands Network of Human Rights Research (NNHRR) (since January 2017)
    • Member of the Human Rights Committee of the Advisory Council on International Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (AIV) (since June 2013)
    • Member of the Editorial Board and Executive Editor of the Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights (NQHR) (since May 2013)
    • Member of the Board of the Royal Netherlands Society of International Law  (KNVIR) (since November 2012)
    • Chair of the Advisory Board of the project “Shelter City” coordinate by Justice and Peace Netherlands (since August 2012)
    • Member of the Netherlands National Commission for UNESCO (August 2009-July 2017)
    • Member of the U40 group on the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions (July 2008-July 2017)
    • Member of the European Expert Network on Culture EENC (January 2011 – December 2015)
    • Member of the Scientific Committee of the World Forum on Human Rights, Nantes (July 2007 – July 2014)
    • President of the Dutch United Nations Association (NVVN) (May 2007 – May 2015)
  • Publications

    2022

    2020

    2018

    2017

    • Donders, Y. (2017). The Enjoyment of Cultural Rights by Women on an Equal Basis with Men: Report 2012 (A/67/287). In L. Belder, & H. Porsdam (Eds.), Negotiating Cultural Rights: Issues at Stake, Challenges and Recommendations (pp. 100-119). Edward Elgar. https://doi.org/10.4337/9781786435422.00011 [details]

    2016

    2015

    • Donders, Y. (2015). Balancing interests: limitations to the right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications / Une balance des intérêts - Les restrictions au droit de bénéficier du progrès scientifique et de ses applications. Journal Européen des Droits de l'Homme, 2015(4), 486-503. [details]
    • Donders, Y. (2015). Cultural Human Rights and the UNESCO Convention: More than Meets the Eye? In C. De Beukelaer, M. Pyykkönen, & J. P. Singh (Eds.), Globalization, Culture, and Development: The UNESCO Convention on Cultural Diversity (pp. 117-131). Palgrave Macmillan. https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137397638_9 [details]
    • Donders, Y. (2015). International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights: accessibility and the right to information. In T. McGonagle, & Y. Donders (Eds.), The United Nations and freedom of expression and information: critical perspectives (pp. 89-120). Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781316018552.004 [details]
    • Donders, Y. (2015). The cultural dimension of economic activities in international human right jurisprudence. In V. Vadi, & B. de Witte (Eds.), Culture and international economic law (pp. 33-49). (Routledge research in international economic law). Routledge. [details]

    2014

    2013

    • Donders, Y. (2013). Cultural pluralism in international human rights law: the role of reservations. In A. F. Vrdoljak (Ed.), The cultural dimension of human rights (pp. 205-239). (Collected courses of the Academy of European Law; No. 22/1). Oxford University Press. http://ssrn.com/abstract=2230276 [details]
    • Donders, Y. (2013). Mesurer le droit de participer à la vie culturelle: le développement des indicateurs. In J. Bouchard, S. Gandolfi, & P. Meyer-Bisch (Eds.), Les droits de l'homme: une grammaire du développement (pp. 229-245). L'Harmattan. [details]
    • Donders, Y., & Olde Monnikhof, M. (2013). The Newly Established Netherlands Institute for Human Rights: Integrating Human Rights and Equal Treatment. In J. Wouters, & K. Meuwissen (Eds.), National human rights institutions in Europe: comparative, European and international perspectives (pp. 83-103). (International law; No. 10). Intersentia. [details]

    2012

    • Donders, Y. M. (2012). Cultural rights in the Convention on the Diversity of Cultural Expressions: included or ignored? In T. Kono, & S. Van Uytsel (Eds.), The UNESCO Convention on the Diversity of Cultural Expressions: a tale of fragmentation of international law? (pp. 165-182). (International law series). Intersentia. [details]
    • Donders, Y. M. (2012). Human rights and cultural diversity: too hot to handle? Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights, 30(4), 377-381. http://www.nqhr.net/pdf_file/ITS/NQHR_30_04_0377.pdf [details]

    2011

    2008

    • Donders, Y. (2008). A right to cultural identity in UNESCO. In F. Francioni, & M. Scheinin (Eds.), Cultural human rights (pp. 317-340). (International studies in human rights; No. 95). Nijhoff. [details]
    • Donders, Y. (2008). The history of the UNESCO convention on the protection and promotion of the diversity of cultural expressions. In H. Schneider, & P. van den Bossche (Eds.), Protection of cultural diversity from an international and European perspective (pp. 1-30). Intersentia. [details]

    2019

    2017

    2015

    2014

    • Donders, Y. M. (2014). Europa's voorvechter van economische en sociale rechten: het Europees Comité voor Sociale Rechten. Ars Aequi, 63(4), 253-261. https://arsaequi.nl/product/europas-voorvechter-van-economische-en-sociale-rechten/ [details]
    • van Eijk, N. (Author), Roessler, B. (Author), Zuiderveen Borgesius, F. (Author), Oostveen, M. (Author), et al., U. (Author), van Son, R. (Author), Verkade, F. (Author), Vliek, M. (Author), Alberdingk Thijm, C. (Author), Apt, K. (Author), Böhler, B. (Author), den Boon, A. (Author), Breemen, K. (Author), Breemen, V. (Author), de Goede, M. (Author), van Gompel, S. (Author), Guibault, L. (Author), Helberger, N. (Author), Hins, A. W. (Author), ... Taylor, L. (Author). (2014). Academics Against Mass Surveillance. Web publication/site http://www.academicsagainstsurveillance.org/ [details]

    2013

    2012

    • Donders, Y. M. (2012). Old cultures never die? Cultural genocide in international law. In I. Boerefijn, L. Henderson, R. Janse, & R. Weaver (Eds.), Human rights and conflicts: essays in honour of Bas de Gaay Fortman (pp. 287-303). Intersentia. [details]
    • Donders, Y. M., & Olde Monnikhof, M. (2012). Het College voor de Rechten van de Mens belicht, bewaakt, beschermt en bevordert mensenrechten in Nederland. NJCM-Bulletin, 37(6), 693-713. [details]

    2011

    2010

    2009

    • Donders, Y. M. (2009). Assepoester vindt haar prins: de Onafhankelijke Deskundige Culturele Rechten. NJCM-Bulletin, 34(7), 811-828. [details]

    2008

    • Donders, Y. (2008). The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: a victory for cultural autonomy? In I. Boerefijn, & J. Goldschmidt (Eds.), Changing perceptions of sovereignty and human rights: essays in honour of Cees Flinterman (pp. 99-122). Intersentia. [details]

    2007

    • Donders, Y. M. (2007). Study on the legal framework of the right to take part in cultural life. In Y. M. Donders, & V. Volodin (Eds.), Human Rights in Education, Science and Culture: Legal Developments and Challenges (pp. 231-271). Unesco publishing. [details]
    • Donders, Y. M., & Volodin, V. (Eds.) (2007). Human Rights in Education, Science and Culture. Legal Developments and Challenges. Unesco publishing. [details]

    2019

    • Donders, Y. M. (2019). Ahunbay e.a. t. Turkije. 119. Case note on: EHRM, 29/01/19, ECLI:CE:ECHR:2019:0129DEC000608006 (Ahunbay e.a. t. Turkije). EHRC. European Human Right Cases, 20(6), 341-345. [details]

    2018

    2016

    2015

    • den Heijer, M., & Donders, Y. M. (2015). ECSR (rolnr. 90/2013: Recht op huisvesting; recht op sociale en geneeskundige bijstand; dakloosheid; onrechtmatig verblijf). EHRC. European Human Right Cases, 2015(2), 75-79. [24]. http://opmaatnieuw.sdu.nl/link/JUR/EHRC/2015/24 [details]

    2014

    • Donders, Y. (2014). Cultural human rights in international law: from recognition to realization. In Formaçao Jurídica e Juridiciária - Colectânea, tomo X (pp. 131-152). Centro de Formação Jurídica en Judiciária. [details]

    2012

    2010

    2009

    • Donders, Y. M. (2009). The right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress: in search of state obligations. European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratisation.
    • Donders, Y. M. (2009). Culture and human rights. In D. P. Forsythe (Ed.), Encyclopedia of human rights. - Vol. 1 (pp. 441-450). Oxford University Press. [details]
    • Donders, Y., & Laaksonen, A. (2009). Finding ways to measure the cultural dimension in human rights and development. Amsterdam Law School, University of Amsterdam. http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1657837 [details]
    • Donders, Y., & Laaksonen, A. (2009). Policy guidelines. In Policy guidelines: Civil Society Platform on Access to Culture: structured dialogue EU-Cultural Sector (pp. 1-15). Civil Society Platform on Access to Culture. http://ec.europa.eu/culture/documents/platform_access_culture_july09.pdf

    2008

    2007

    • Donders, Y. M. (2007). Cultural Diversity and Human Rights: a Good Match? Study for the preparation of the UNESCO World Report on Cultural Diversity. UNESCO. [details]

    Membership

    • Donders, Y. (2019-2025). Commissioner National Human Rights Institute / Lid College voor de Rechten van de Mens, National Human Rights Institute / College voor de Rechten van de Mens.
    • Donders, Y. (2018-2022). Member of the International Law Association (ILA) International Committee on Participation in Global Cultural Heritage Governance, International Law Association.
    • Donders, Y. (2017-2021). Chair of the Steering Committee of the Netherlands Network for Human Rights Research, Netherlands Network for Human Rights Research (NNHRR).
    • Donders, Y. (2016-). Member and chair of the Steering Committee of the Netherlands Network for Human Rights Research, Netherlands Network for Human Rights Research.
    • Donders, Y. (2013-2022). Human Rights Committee of the Advisory Council on International Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Human Rights Committee of the Advisory Council on International Affairs.
    • Donders, Y. (2012-2022). Lid Algemeen Bestuur Koninklijke Nederlandse Vereniging voor Internationaal Recht / Member of the Board of the Royal Netherlands Society of (…), Nederlandse Vereniging voor Internationaal Recht.

    Journal editor

    • Donders, Y. (editor) (2013-2021). Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights (Journal).

    Others

    • Donders, Y. (participant) (15-12-2021). Experts Meeting to elaborate a UNESCO Report on Scientific Freedom, Paris (participating in a conference, workshop, ...).
    • Donders, Y. (participant) (9-12-2021). UNESCO-AAAS seminar “Making the connections: The right to science, the Sustainable Development Goals and the COVID-19 pandemic", Paris (participating in a conference, workshop, ...).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) (9-2018 - 9-2022). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) & den Heijer, M. (examiner) (9-2018 - 9-2022). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) & Sluiter, G. (examiner) (8-2018 - 8-2022). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) (31-5-2018). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) (17-12-2017). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (visiting researcher) (9-2017 - 10-2017). Osaka University (visiting an external institution).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) (8-3-2017). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) & van der Wilt, H. (examiner) (2017 - 2020). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) (28-5-2015). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) (11-6-2013). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) & van Alebeek, R. (examiner) (1-2013 - 12-2019). PhD (examination).
    • Donders, Y. (examiner) (12-10-2012). PhD (examination).
    • Kjos, Dr. H. E. (consultant), Donders, Y. (consultant) & de Wet, E. (consultant) (4-2007). The Judicial Independence of the International Labour Organization Administrative Tribunal: Potential for Reform, Staff Union of the European Patent Office (consultancy).

    2020

    • Vleugel, V. W. (2020). Culture in the state reporting procedure of the UN human rights treaty bodies: How the HRC, the CESCR and the CEDAWCee use human rights as a sword to protect and promote culture, and as a shield to protect against harmful culture. [details]

    2002

    • Donders, Y. M. (2002). Towards a Right to Cultural Identity?. Intersentia/Hart.

    2013

    • Donders, Y. (2013). Cultural Pluralism in International Human Rights Law: The Role of Reservations. (Amsterdam Law School Legal Studies Research Paper; No. 2013-16). Amsterdam Center for International Law, University of Amsterdam. http://ssrn.com/abstract=2230276 [details]
    • Donders, Y. M., & Vleugel, V. (2013). The Receptor Approach: A New Human Rights Kid on the Block or Old Wine in New Bags? A Commentary on Professor Zwart's Article in HRQ. (Amsterdam Law School Legal Studies Research Paper; No. 2013-64). Amsterdam Center for International Law, University of Amsterdam. http://ssrn.com/abstract=2348660 [details]
    This list of publications is extracted from the UvA-Current Research Information System. Questions? Ask the library or the Pure staff of your faculty / institute. Log in to Pure to edit your publications. Log in to Personal Page Publication Selection tool to manage the visibility of your publications on this list.
  • Ancillary activities
    • Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights
      Member Board of Editors
    • Shelter City
      Chair Advisory Committee
    • College voor de Rechten van de Mens
      Wetgevingsadvies, beleidsadvies, gelijke behandelingszaken
    • Member Human Rights Committee AIV
      Advies aan Ministerie Buitenlandse Zaken over internationale vraagstukken