[ONLINE] Public Ethics Talk: Should rivers and seas have rights?

Start date
End date
Online via MS Teams

On Thursday 13 June the Centre for Public Values & Ethics organises a Public Ethics Talk on ‘Should rivers and seas have rights?’ by Jasmijn Leeuwenkamp.

In the global rise of rights of nature (RoN) cases, many pertain to water bodies, leading to an increasing demand for rights of water bodies. Simultaneously, however, it has been stressed that the climate change-induced ‘water crisis’ demands attention to the human right to water. How should we consider the tension between humans’ right to water and RoN perspectives that reject reducing water bodies to a resource for human use?

Drawing on recent work in posthumanism and the environmental humanities, Jasmijn proposes thinking with water as a way out of this ostensible tension. She argues that the fluid, dynamic, and uncontrollable character of (bodies of) water problematizes its role as both subject and object of rights, looking at the way that the relation with water is imagined in two RoN cases: the Whanganui River (New Zealand) and the Embassy of the North Sea (The Netherlands)

About the speaker

Jasmijn Leeuwenkamp is a PhD candidate in philosophy at Amsterdam School of Cultural Analysis, University of Amsterdam. Her research focuses on anthropocentrism in human rights discourse and explores the interrelations between political philosophy, critical theory, ecology, and rights-based environmental protection strategies. She has written on such topics as posthumanism, religion and ecology, colonial legacies in conceptions of nature, and anthropocentrism in human rights.

Join via MS Teams


Public Ethic Talks

The series Public Ethics Talks is organised by the Centre for Public Values & Ethics of the Institute of Public Administration, in collaboration with the Institute of Security and Global Affairs and Leiden University College. The talks aim to bring in cutting-edge work in ethics, moral philosophy, political theory and the normative theory of law to reflect on the practice of public policy, organisation and management. The talks are held in public and are open to a wide audience of public professionals, students and academics.