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Marius Pieterse

Marius Pieterse

NIAS Individual Fellow

Project title

Human Rights in the African City

Research question

How does the use, enforcement, appropriation and conceptual development of human rights law, in relation to urban governance, play out in African cities?

Project description

Drawing on literature on human rights in the city, human rights cities and urban rights (such as the right to the city), “Human Rights in the African City” first compares the ways in which urban local governments are implicated in decisions of regional human rights commissions and courts in Europe and Africa. Secondly, I study examples of reliance on human rights by African city governments in asserting their urban identity or developmental vision and in distancing themselves from nationally-tolerated violations of the human rights of vulnerable groups. These experiences will be compared to the experiences of European “human rights cities”.

Selected publications

Marius Pieterse Rights-based Litigation, Urban Governance and Social Justice in South Africa: The Right to Joburg (Routledge/Taylor & Francis, 2017).

Marius Pieterse “Resisting Marginalisation in the World Class City: Eking Out a Legal Right to Public Presence in the City of Cape Town” in Barbara Oomen, Janne Nijman et al (eds.) The Urban Politics of Human Rights (Routledge 2022, forthcoming).

Marius Pieterse “Devolution, Urban Autonomy and Local Governance in the Cities of the SADC” (2020) 28(4) African Journal of International and Comparative Law 612-635.

Marius Pieterse “Urban Autonomy in South African Intergovernmental Relations Jurisprudence” (2019) 13(2) Vienna Journal on International Constitutional Law 119-146.

Marius Pieterse “Socio-economic Rights Adjudication and Democratic Urban Governance: Reassessing the “Second Wave” Jurisprudence of the South African Constitutional Court (2018) 51(1) Verfassung und Recht in Ubersee 12-34.