Skip main navigation

‘Peace and conflict’ with Eirik Bjorge

In this video, Eirik Bjorge talks about the concept of sovereignty, and how it relates to the ideas of global citizenship.

The challenges of global responses and responsibilities

At the start of this week, Mark Allinson talked about how the International Court of Justice was established, along with the Declaration of Human Rights, in response to the Second World War. It was built on the recognition that cooperation is needed to avoid such conflicts in the future and ensure human rights for all people. In the previous section, Madhu was talking about the idea of cultural relativism, and to what extent one culture or nation can or should be judged by another.

But these ideas, to a certain extent, cause some tension when considered together, and particularly at a state level. When should one state intervene in the decisions of another state?

If all states have the right to conduct their affairs as they choose, can we ever really ensure that everyone on the planet has the same basic assurance of human rights?

In this final section of the week, Eirik discusses this in more detail, by considering the idea of sovereignty. He presents some examples of situations in which the International Court of Justice has played a part.

As you watch this video, you might want to consider your responses to these questions, and add some comments to the discussion:

  • Can you see how a precedent for one country having the right to affect the governance of another may be problematic?

  • Can you think of examples that you have seen or heard in the media which would demonstrate these ideas in a real context?

This article is from the free online

Unleash Your Potential: Global Citizenship

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now