Civilising Globalisation: Human Rights and the Global Economy

Event date: 
15 Oct 2009 12:30pm
Seminar Room, Level 2, Law Building, UNSW, Kensington Campus


The paper draws on the book of the same name recently published by Cambridge University Press. The paper analyses how human rights intersect with the three principal components of the global economy – trade, aid and commerce.  It adopts the twin perspectives that while the global economy is an essential civilising instrument, it nonetheless has within it tendencies and practices that themselves require civilising, according to human rights standards.  From this base, the paper chastens both extremes of the debate and constructs an argument for seeking out and promoting the ways in which the global economy advances the ends of human rights, while at the same time taming the undesirable excesses of capitalisme sauvage and containing the detrimental effects of market failures, such as we are presently witnessing in the global capital markets

David Kinley holds the Chair in Human Rights Law at the University of Sydney. He has taught at universities all over the world and held academic posts in the UK and the US, as well as Australia. He publications in the particular field of human rights and the global economy include: Commercial Law and Human Rights (2002, with Bottomley), Human Rights and Corporations (2009), and  World Trade Organisation and Human Rights (forthcoming, 2009, with Joseph and Waincymer), as well as many articles and reports. He has advised governments and multinational corporations on human rights issues, and has worked for and with agencies such as the UN, the World Bank, AusAID and various NGOs on human rights related projects, especially in countries across South East Asia.

David was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland.  He studied at the universities of Sheffield and Cambridge, and after obtaining his doctorate from the latter in 1990, he moved to Australia.