On September 4th, our pilot results from the Essential Laws for Medicines Access project were presented at the workshop‘International Law and Domestic Law Making Process’ at the University of Basel. This invited presentation contributed empirical evidence about the introduction of access to medicines in domestic law as part of the international norm, the right to health, to the broader discussion about which factors determine the relationship between international and domestic law and whether governments have sufficient leeway in deciding how to implement their international commitments.
Our preliminary findings show that only two countries in our sample take a rights-based approach to universal access in domestic law. Future research will elaborate on these results to understand what factors led governments to make these commitments and what has resulted from them. (See our open call for research assistance)
Dr. Ioana Cismas (Stirling Law School, Scotland) chaired our discussion about this and other evidence from the democratic legitimation of trade agreements in Switzerland, presented by Dr. Charlotte Sieber-Gasser (World Trade Institute & Graduate Institute), and the use of flexibility mechanisms in human rights treaties, presented by Gentiana Imeri (University of St. Gallen). The workshop was graciously organised by Dr. Evelyne Schmid and Dr. Tilmann Altwicker in collaboration with the AjV (Arbeitskreis junger Volkerrechtswissenschaftler*innen). The workshop programme is available here.