Published On: 16 February, 20242.9 min read

EVICT Conference on The Impact of the Right to Housing in Times of Crisis – Day 1

January 25, 2024

The EVICT conference kicked off with a bang as a storm swept through the Netherlands. Despite some flight cancellations and train problems, all our participants managed to make it to Het Schip on Friday. Prof. Dr. Malcolm Langford opened the floor with his keynote speech, discussing the meaning of the impact of the right to housing and how to measure it.

Malcolm’s talk segued nicely into the first panel session of the day, which was on the international right to housing in a more general sense, looking at theory and methodology surrounding this issue. The session was chaired by Dr. Andrei Quintiá Pastrana and consisted of four talks. First, Dr. Christoph U. Schmid from the University of Bremen presented (and even joked a bit!) on using the right to housing as a legal standard for national housing policies. We then heard from Prof. Dr. Jasper Krommendijk from Radboud Universiteit, who had some thoughts on the measurement and conceptualization of human rights impact. After him, Serde Atalay from Lund University presented on international housing rights of migrants and refugees. Finally, Prof. Dr. Michel Vols from University of Groningen presented on the need for reliable structural indicators when assessing the impact of the right to adequate housing.

After enduring a chilly first panel, due to broken radiators, the second panel was much more comfortable after the installation of mobile heaters. The second panel (chaired by Emma N. Sweeney) focused on the impact of the right to housing in Ireland. The panel kicked off with Prof. Dr. Padraic Kenna from the University of Galway who gave an insightful presentation on the impact of the right to housing in Ireland by drawing symmetries to the Barbie movie! Following this, Prof. Dr. Fiona Donson from University College Cork presented on the role of a constitutional right to housing and how justice should be centered within a rights-based approach to housing. Dr. Samantha Morgan Williams from University College Cork presented her research on Ireland’s systematic undermining of “culturally appropriate” accommodation rights for Travellers. Last but not least, Dr. Rory Hearne presented his research on the progress towards a constitutional right to housing in Ireland.

After the interesting and stimulating discussions in the afternoon, we had time for a quick coffee before our final session of the day. This panel focused on the impact of the right to housing in Spain and was chaired by Els Schipaanboord. Prof. Dr. Alba Nogueira López from the University of Santiago de Compostela kicked us off with his work on administrative vulnerability and the implementation obstacles facing the international right to housing. Next, Prof. Dr. Juli Ponce Solé from the University of Barcelona presented on the Impact of EU Law on the Right to Housing in Spain. The final presentation of the day was given by Emma N. Sweeney and Andrei Quintiá Pastrana from the University of Groningen. They presented their comparative research on the influence of the right to housing in Ireland and Spain.

However, the busy day didn’t end there. Our guests met at restaurant Pacific in Amsterdam that evening, where we got to get to know everyone in a more relaxed setting over a lovely shared dinner!

Written by

Emma Nic ShuibhnePhD Student

Iris SchepersPhD Student

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