JUS5134 – International Law of Peace

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Course content


Peace and Conflict studies traditionally tend to focus on the causes and dynamics of conflict. This is the only legal course in the world which seeks to explore the normative framework and substantive components of peace under international law. How does the international community create a sustainable Peace? How can peace be emancipatory instead of oppressive in the face of growing authoritarianism, nativism, and populism?  Is only Negative Peace law?  How can Positive Peace be justiciable?

We begin with a review of the philosophical origins of the right to peace, followed by legal analysis of relevant international instruments, including the UN Charter, regional instruments, and human rights law. Special lectures address the substantive components of Peace: The prohibition on the Use of Force, the role of the UN Security Council, UN General Assembly, and ICJ, the evolution of third generation Human Rights, the principle of peaceful coexistence, the obligation to pursue peaceful dispute resolution, the link to Sustainable Development and Energy Solidarity, Gender Equality, Non-Discrimination, Transitional Justice, Constitutional Law, and Protection of Refugees. Particular attention is paid to the role of civil society and non-state actors.  Students will be able to apply their knowledge of the interface between peace and international law in careers based on diplomacy, transitional justice, and peace building.

For students enrolled in Rettsvitenskap (jus) (master - 5 år): Have you considered a specialization as part of your degree? The course is part of the profile Internasjonal rett.

Read more about profiles.

Learning outcome

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Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.

You may register for this course if you have admission to Rettsvitenskap (jus) (master - 5 år)Theory and Practice of Human Rights (master's two years) and Peace and Conflict Studies (master's two years) at UiO or the faculty's exchange programme.

Students admitted to other Master's programmes may apply for guest student status.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

Students must fill one of these requirements:

  • Passed 1st - 3rd year of the 5-years degree Master of Laws (Master i rettsvitenskap at UiO) (or exams that qualify for exemption for these) or
  • Hold a 5-years Master’s degree in Laws (Master i rettsvitenskap at UiO) or equivalent.

Exemptions from the formal prerequisites will be given to students with admission to the faculty's own exchange or master’s degree programmes. This rule does not apply to students with admission to other master’s degree programmes at the University of Oslo, unless otherwise agreed.

Students attending the following programmes are also exempt from the formal prerequisites:

Recommended previous knowledge

Prior knowledge of international law and/or human rights is helpful but not required.

Overlapping courses

10 credits overlap with HUMR5134 – The Right to Peace (continued)




Term paper

4000- 6000 words

Compulsory activity:

A research question/description of a chosen term paper topic must be submitted in Canvas in the middle of the semester. Students will get feedback on the topic from the teacher. If the chosen topic is not approved students will not be allowed to submit the term paper.  

Footnotes should be included in the word count of the main text. Not included in this count: front page (title etc.), summary, table of contents and references (bibliography). (If relevant for the paper).

Assignments/papers with text exceeding the word limit will not be accepted.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Marking criteria 

This  guide is used by examiners for grading this course.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take this exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

There are special rules for resitting a passed examination in the master's programme in Law.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Every other autumn starting 2012


Every other autumn starting 2012

Teaching language