This paper assesses the potential implications of the ECtHR’s positive duties to mobilise the criminal law on domestic criminal justice systems. It shows that the Court tends to present criminal accountability as indispensable to protect human rights. This approach may foster a ‘culture of conviction’ at the domestic level whereby punishment is seen as the end to pursue whatever the cost. While the jurisprudence currently refers to the duty to punish as an obligation of means, increased concern with the efficiency of the criminal system in preventing crime is leading the Court to consider whether adequate punishment has been imposed. Such uncritical invocation of conviction and punishment might in practice encourage limitations to due process rights, harsher punishments and wider powers of arrest and detention. Conversely, criminal justice reform initiatives, directed at reducing unnecessary criminalisation and implementing alternatives to prison, are totally neglected.
Our 2020 Annual Conference was scheduled to be held at the University of Wrocław in Poland on July 9-11, 2020.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the ICON·S Executive Committee has decided to postpone our 2020 Conference to 2021. Our next Annual Conference will take place from July 8-10, 2021, in Wrocław, Poland.
Procedural details regarding the organization of the 2021 Conference will follow in the months ahead.Join ICON•S