Redefining Self-Determination in the 21st Century

Events / 01.4.14

Accommodating different nations, ethnic, cultural and religious groups within the same territory is still seen as a democratic challenge for contemporary multicultural states. In an increasingly interdependent world, due to processes of economic globalisation, a great number of multicultural states are experiencing grass-roots demands for recognition. This has taken the expression of an increased number of people mobilising with a view of exercising their right to self-determination, including in Europe, where the minority protection system has been hailed as the most advanced in the world.

This seminar addresses the issue to answer the need of providing new models to make the minority dimension work within the framework of multinational states, UNPO, Centre Maurits Coppieters and CIEMEN  pursue a landmark initiative dedicated specifically to exploring the different conceptual dimensions of the right to self-determination.

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Keynote Speakers and schedule

 09:30 Accreditation

10:00 – Opening and welcome word

10:15 – Panel I: Self-Determination Today: Individual and Collective Rights

  • Exercising Self-Determination: External vs Internal Dimension. By Professor Michael Jewkes, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven.
  • Minority Language Protection in the EU? By Professor Miquel Strubell, Open University of Catalonia.
  • The ‘Separatist Stigma’: Self-determination vs Territorial Integrity. By Professor Bruno de Cordier, Ghent University, Programme Coordinator at Conflict Research Group.
  • Questions and answers Session

11:00 – Panel II: Redefining Self‐Determination: Past & Current Cases

  • The Case of Scotland. By Rami Ousta, Ethnic Minorities Infrastructure in Scotland (BEMIS).
  • Unilateral Exercise of Self-Determination. By Professor Alan Sandry, Swansea University and Centre Maurits Coppieters.
  • Constitutional Regulation and Internal Community Supervision. By Professor Ivan Serrano, Open University of Catalonia.
  • Questions and answers Session

 12:00 – Closure

12:30 – Lunch

14:00 – Guided tour in the Flemish Parliament

17:00 – Networking reception

Download here the Full program


When: Tuesday, 1st April 2014 at 09:30

Where: European Parliament (Brussels)

Address: Rue Wiertz 60, 1047 Brussels

Interpretation: No interpretation provided. Working language is English


Seats are limited. Do you plan to attend? Please RSVP via the web form


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This seminar is an initiative of UNPO in cooperation with the Centre Maurits Coppieters and CIEMEN. Academic support is provided by Universitat Oberta de Catalunya.

This Conference is financially supported by the European Parliament. The European Parliament is not liable for the content of the conference nor the opinions of the speakers.