International Humanitarian Law


After successfully completed this course, students will be able to:

  1. identify concepts, terminology, and arenas of international humanitarian law;
  2. recognize and apply key sources of international humanitarian law, and comprehend the complex relationships between them;
  3. work on cases related to human rights violations pertaining to the field of international humanitarian law;
  4. develop arguments on the intersection of law, human rights and politics at international level;
  5. and reflect on contemporary challenges, such as those arising of the use of new technologies on the battlefield, related to international humanitarian law.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Laura Iñigo Alvarez, Veronica Corcodel


Weekly - 3

Total - 36

Teaching language



To attend the course, it is expected that the students have thorough knowledge of public international law.


  • David Kennedy, Of war and law (Princeton University Press 2009)
  • Giovanni Mantilla, Lawmaking under Pressure: International Humanitarian Law and Internal Armed Conflict (Cornell University Press 2021)
  • Tim McFarland, Autonomous Weapon Systems and the Law of Armed Conflict Compatibility with International Humanitarian Law (Cambridge University Press 2020)
  • Sassoli M., International Humanitarian Law. Rules, Controversies, and Solutions to Problems Arising in Warfare (Edward Elgar Publishing Limited 2019)
  • Solis G., The Law of Armed Conflict. International Humanitarian Law in War (Cambridge University Press 2010)
  • Heffes E./Kotlik M./Ventura M. (eds.) , International Humanitarian Law and Non-State Actors. Debates, Law and Practice (The Hague: T.M.C. Asser Pres 2020)

Teaching method

The course will consist of weekly short lectures and seminar-style discussion. That discussion will be based not only on the slides' content, but also on the reading material, which will be regularly made available to the course participants on Moodle. 

Evaluation method

The students will be assessed on the basis of a continuous evaluation model (essay and problem question). 

Students retain the right to be assessed on the basis of a final written exam.

Subject matter

  1. Introduction to IHL (both Prof. Veronica Corcodel and Prof. Laura Íñigo Álvarez)
  2. History and Sources of IHL (Prof. Veronica Corcodel)
  3. The Main Principles of IHL  (Prof. Veronica Corcodel)
  4. The Main Protective Regimes in IHL (Prof. Laura Íñigo Álvarez)
  5. The Aims and Uses of IHL: Critical Approaches (Prof. Veronica Corcodel)
  6. Armed Non-State Actors in IHL (Prof. Laura Íñigo Álvarez)
  7. The War on Terror (Prof. Veronica Corcodel)
  8. New Weapon Technologies (Prof. Laura Íñigo Álvarez)
  9. Cyber Attacks (Prof. Veronica Corcodel)
  10. Intersections with Human Rights Law (Prof. Laura Íñigo Álvarez)
  11. Intersections with International Criminal Law (Prof. Laura Íñigo Álvarez)
  12. Concluding Remarks on IHL (both Prof. Veronica Corcodel and Prof. Laura Íñigo Álvarez)