ICL Faculty 2

The ICL Certificate Program is taught by experienced educators, practitioners, and industry experts and is currently divided into two Courses.

Introductory Course

The Introductory Course is composed of 10 introductory modules that cover the history, creation and ideas behind the introduction of international criminal law (ICL) into the global arena of developing and evolving international relations. Modules range from foundational concepts through to the subject areas of genocide, crimes against humanity, and the protections against violations and abuses. The Introductory Course ends with the practical application of ICL in national courts and a probing view at the liabilities, defences and immunities involved in international judicial processes surrounding the use of ICL.


The Introductory Course offers students the basic principles of ICL knowledge. These modules provide interesting foundational materials with illustrated examples through videos, photos, optional readings and short online quizzes. The Introductory Course is designed for students with little to no knowledge of ICL, or for those who need updates on key concepts and principles or retraining on the founding pillars. Once you register, there are no deadlines for taking the course, allowing everyone to proceed at their own pace.


There is no prerequisite to register for the Introductory Course.

Designed for

  • Lawyers in private practice with little ICL background
  • NGO lawyers and staff working in related areas such as international human rights, international development and peace & security
  • Federal and provincial lawyers and other civil servants working in related areas
  • Legal and non-legal academics researching and teaching in related fields
  • Journalists covering international issues
  • Law students with little ICL background
  • Pre-law students

Course Content

Lecture 1.0. History, Introduction of ICL and accountability
Instructor: René Provost

Lecture 2.0. The International Criminal Court
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 3.0. Genocide
Instructor: William Schabas

Lecture 4.0. Crimes Against Humanity
Instructor: Darryl Robinson

Lecture 5.0. War Crimes
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 6.0. The Crime of Aggression
Instructor: Tim Radcliffe

Lecture 7.0. Gender-based Crimes in ICL
Instructor: Linda Bianchi

Lecture 8.0. Application of ICL in National Courts
Instructor: Fannie Lafontaine

Lecture 9.0. Principles of Liability in ICL
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 10.0. Defences and immunities
Instructor: Fannie Lafontaine

Register for the Introductory Course

 Advanced Course I

[Note: Advanced courses may be amended based on feedback and comments from participants]

Advanced Course I vastly expands into the intricacies of ICL, with 35 advanced modules covering a wide range of topics, all of which serve particular purpose within the application of ICL in different contexts. These modules will encourage students to think on difficult questions, entertain divisive notions and lean into timely but uncomfortable conversations taking place in the international legal arena. How does ICL play out at the UN Security Council – and does this entity retain any of its former power? What is the ‘Specific Intent’ in the crime of genocide? Who are the protected people and prohibited weapons during armed conflicts, and are these notion still relevant today? These advanced modules provide a wide spectrum of in-depth knowledge and practical examples of the concepts first introduced in the Introductory Course.


Modules in the Advanced Course I are a continuation of the Introductory Course and will have a more practical aspect to further increase the student’s knowledge and enhance critical thinking on current ICL issues. These modules are ideal for professionals working in the international field who wish to gain a deeper understanding of a specific matter.


Although there are no prerequisites to register for Advanced Course I, and it is not mandatory to have completed the Introductory Course, Advanced Course I is designed for persons with a prior basic knowledge of ICL. We recommend certain courses before embarking on Advanced Course I – and these are listed below.

Course Content

*Courses in Blue are currently being recorded and not yet available

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 1.0. History, Introduction of ICL and accountability

Lecture 1.1.    Nuremberg and Tokyo, ICTY and ICTR, Hybrid Tribunals
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 1.2.   Subjects of ICL (state, individuals, corporations, other entities)
Instructor: René Provost

Lecture 1.3.    Relationship between IHL and ICL
Instructor: René Provost

Lecture 1.4.    The relationship between ICL, transitional justice, transnational and refugee law
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 2.0. The International Criminal Court”

Lecture 2.1.    Jurisdiction and admissibility
Instructor: Timothy Radcliffe

Lecture 2.2.    Proving International Crimes: Evidence
Instructor: Timothy Radcliffe 

Lecture 2.3.    Cooperation Issues
Instructor: Darryl Robinson

Lecture 2.4.     Victims’ Participation
Instructor: Jo-Anne Wemmers

Lecture 2.5.     Victims’ Reparation
Instructor: Jo-Anne Wemmers

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 3.0. Genocide”

Lecture 3.1.    Protected Groups
Instructor: Payam Akhavan

Lecture 3.2.    Specific Intent
Instructor: Payam Akhavan 

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 4.0. Crimes Against Humanity”

Lecture 4.1.    International Elements of Crimes Against Humanity
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 4.2.    Prohibited acts, Part 1 (Traditional types of underlying offences)
Instructor: Linda Bianchi

Lecture 4.3.    Prohibited acts, Part 2 (Persecution, Imprisonment, Forced Deportation & offences specific to Rome Statute, such as apartheid and enforced disappearance) 
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 4.4.    A future treaty on Crimes against humanity
Instructor: Hugo Relva 

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 5.0. War Crimes”

Lecture 5.1. International Elements of War Crimes
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 5.2. Protected People (Protection of  Civilians & Peacekeepers)
Instructor: TBD

Lecture 5.3. Protected Property (Protection of Monuments & Cultural Property)
Instructor: TBD

Lecture 5.4. Prohibited Weapons
Instructor: René Provost

Lecture 5.5. Child Soldiers
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof 

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 6.0. Aggression”

Lecture 6.1.     Individual liability for a state crime
Instructor: TBD

Lecture 6.2.    The International Criminal Court, Complementarity and Aggression
Instructor: TBD

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 7.0. Sexual & Gender Based Crimes in ICL”

Lecture 7.1. Sexual & Gender-based Prohibited Acts (acts considered to amount to Genocide, Crimes Against Humanity & War Crimes)
Instructor: Valerie Oosterveld 

Lecture 7.2. Investigating, Documenting & Proving Gender-based Crimes
Instructor: Linda Bianchi

Lecture 7.3. Victims & Witnesses of Gender-based Crimes
Instructor: Jo-Anne Wemmers

Lecture 7.4. Protection of children
Instructor: Valerie Oosterveld 

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 8.0. Application of ICL in National Courts”

Lecture 8.1.    Universal Jurisdiction: Prosecuting International Crimes in Canada
Instructor: Matt Eisenbrandt

Lecture 8.2.    Territorial Jurisdiction of Domestic Prosecutions
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 8.3.    Rendition, Extradition and mutual legal assistance
Instructor: Fannie Lafontaine

Lecture 8.4.    Civil Liability
Instructor: François Larocque

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 9.0. Principles of Liability”

Lecture 9.1.    Extended Liability Part 1 (Overview, Aiding & Abetting, and Superior Responsibility)
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 9.2.     Extended liability Part 2 (Joint Criminal Enterprise, Co-Perpetration, and Inchoate Offences)
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Recommended Prerequisite: “Lecture 10.0. Defences and Immunities”

Lecture 10.1.     Non-state parties immunity at the ICC
Instructor: TBD

Lecture 10.2.     Superior order and duress
Instructor: Joseph Rikhof

Lecture 10.3.     Amnesties and statutes of limitations
Instructor: Fannie Lafontaine

Register for Advanced Course I


Register for the Introductory & Advanced Course

Any questions? Don’t hesitate to email us: info@kirschinstitute.ca