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Global Justice


Admission requirements

Admission to this course is restricted to:

  • BA students in Philosophy, who have successfully completed their first year, and who have also completed at least 10 EC’s of the mandatory components of their second year, including Political Philosophy.

  • Pre-master’s students in Philosophy who are in possession of an admission statement, and for whom this course is part of their programme.


There are nearly 8 billion people alive in the world. The quality of their lives varies greatly depending where they live, as do the opportunities they have to achieve things they have reason to value and the way they are treated by those who rule them. This course brings the resources of moral and political philosophy to the key questions of understanding and action: What is wrong with this state of affairs, and what should we do about it?
In the first part of the course we investigate key themes of global justice such as what citizens in rich countries owe to those in poorer countries. In the second part we focus on the most influential paradigm of global justice: human rights.

Course objectives

Students who successfully complete this course will have a good understanding of:

  • key ideas and arguments about global justice developed by ethicists and political philosophers.

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:

  • critically evaluate the ideas and arguments and debates of the authors studied;

  • apply the philosophical resources studied to real-world problems.


Visit MyTimetable.

Mode of instruction

  • Seminars

Class attendance is required and includes preparatory reading and small written assignments.

Assessment method


  • Midterm essay (50%)

  • Final essay (50%)


The final mark for the course is determined by (i) the weighted average of the two essays as specified above combined with (ii) the class attendance requirement.


Students can resit either essay if their overall grade for the entire course is 5 or less. It is not possible to make up for the attendance requirement.
Students who have obtained a satisfactory grade for the first examination cannot take the resit.

Inspection and feedback

Students will have an opportunity to discuss the grading of their essays with the instructor.

Reading list

A reading list will be made available on Brightspace.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available on the website

Students are strongly advised to register in uSis through the activity number which can be found in the timetables for courses and exams.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.


Dr. T.R. Wells


Not applicable.