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Abstract

Both the European and the Inter-American human rights systems are in the process of adapting themselves to the emerging and pressing needs in their respective regions. The high-level conferences on the future of the European Court of Human Rights and the newly-established Forum of the Inter-American Human Rights System are two analogous institutional reform processes. This policy note compares these initiatives. We argue that these parallel processes may have been provoked by similar concerns, yet they have generated different outcomes. The Inter-American system has taken advantage of the Forum to increase its functions and outreach. The high-level conferences, on the other hand, have provided an opportunity for member states to call on the European Court to circumscribe the extent of its functions. Finally, we believe that although these initiatives both envisage strategies tailored for their respective systems, mutual learning between the systems could yield more effective solutions.

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