Robert Goldman

Professor of Law
Louis C. James Scholar

Office: Room 344
Phone: 202-274-4111
E-mail: vCard


Robert K. Goldman is Louis C. James Scholar; co-director, Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law; faculty director, the War Crimes Research Office; and professor of law. He holds expertise in international and human rights law; U.S. foreign policy; terrorism; and law of armed conflict. From 1996 to 2004 he was a member of the Organization of American States’ Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, and its president in 1999. From July 2004 to July 2005, Goldman was the UN Human Rights Commission's Independent Expert on the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism. In October 2005, the International Commission of Jurists named him one of the eight jurists on the Eminent Jurists Panel on Terrorism, Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights. In 2008, Goldman was elected Commissioner and member of the Executive Committee of the International Commission of Jurists. He is author of The Protection of Human Rights: Past, Present and Future (1972); coauthor of Middle East Watch's book, Needless Deaths in the Gulf War, a 1991 publication that assessed civilian casualties during the 39-day air campaign and assigned responsibility for violations of the laws of war; and coauthor of The International Dimension of Human Rights: A Guide For Application in Domestic Law (2001). He is also the author of scores of reports, papers and articles on human rights and humanitarian law related issues.



Areas of Specialization

  • International Human Rights
  • International Humanitarian Law
  • International Law

Degrees & Universities

  • J.D., University of Virginia Law School 1971
  • Universidad de la Republica, Montevideo, Uruguay 1968 (Fulbright Fellow)
  • B.A., University of Pennsylvania 1967

  • Selected Publications

    • + More Publications...

    • Books

    • Robert Goldman (co-author), The International Dimension of Human Rights: A Guide for Application in Domestic Law 2001 (Inter-Amer Dev. Bank 2001).
    • Robert Goldman (co-author), Needless Deaths in The Gulf War (Middle East Watch 1991).
    • Robert Goldman, The Protection of Human Rights in the Americas: Past, Present and Future (N.Y.U. 1972).
    • Other Publications

    • Robert Goldman, History and Action: the Inter-American Human Rights System and the Role of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, 31 Hum. Rights Q. 856 (2009).
    • Robert Goldman, “Internal Displacement, the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, the Principles’ Normative Status, and the Need for Their Effective Domestic Implementation in Colombia”, in Colombian Yearbook of International Law, Vol. 2, 59-86 (Universidad de Rosario 2009).
    • Robert Goldman, Historia y Accion: el Sistema Interamericano de Derechos Humanos y el Papel de La Comision Interamericana de Derechos Humanos, La Proteccion Internacional de Los Derechos Humanos: Un Reto en el Siglo XXI , 109-148 (El colegio de Mexico, Velasco & Ortega eds. 2007).
    • Robert Goldman, La Contribucion Argentina al Sistema Interamericana de Derechos Humanos, Derechos Humanos y Un Nuevo Orden Global , 150-170 (Ministerio de Relaciones Exeriores, Comercio Internacional y Culto 2007).
    • Gallon, Gustavo et al., Simposio. Una Revisión Crítica del Sistema Interamericano de Derechos Humanos: Pasado, Presente y Futuro, in Anuario de Derecho Humanos 2007, 53-82 (Mariano Fernández Valle, Universidad de Chile, Centro de Derechos Humanos 2007).
    • Robert Goldman, Report of the Independent Expeert on the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms While Countering Terrorism to the UN Commission on Human Rights, E/CN.4/2005/103 (Feb. 7, 2005).
    • Robert Goldman, Trivializing Torture: The Office of Legal Counsel's 2002 Opinion Letter and the International Law Against Torture, 12 Hum. Rights Br. 1 (Fall 2004).
    • Robert Goldman, Quien Comete Atrocidades, Fortalece Al Enemigo, Numero 39 (Bogota, Colom.) XIII, XIII-XVI (Dec. 2003).
    • Robert Goldman (co-author), Report of the Commission of International Jurists on the Administration of Justice in Peru, (Nov. 2003).
    • Robert Goldman, The Legal Status of Iraqi and Foreign Combatants Captured by Coalition Armed Forces, Crimes of War Project (Apr. 7, 2003).
    • Robert Goldman & Diane Orentlicher, Rules Between Guerrilla Warfare and War Crimes, Wash. Post (Outlook) (Apr. 6, 2003).
    • Robert Goldman & Brian Tittemore, Unprivileged Combatants and the Hostilities in Afghanistan: Their Status and Rights Under International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, in Am. Soc. Intl. L.: Task Force Papers ( Dec. 2002).
    • Robert Goldman, Certain Legal Questions Raised by the September 11 Attacks, 9 Hum. Rights Br. 2 (Fall 2001).
    • Robert Goldman & Walter Kalin, Proteccion de Los Desplazados Internos Bajo el Derecho Internacional, in Leccion y Ensayos Dossier: Proteccion Internacional de los Derechos Humanos, 223-327 (Facultad de Derecho, Universidad de Buenos Aires 1999).
    • Robert Goldman, Codification of International Rules on Internally Displaced Persons: An Area Where Both Human Rights and Humanitarian Law Considerations are Being Taken Into Account, 324 Intl. Rev. Red Cross 463 (Sept. 1998).
    • Robert Goldman & Walter Kalin, Chapter: Legal Framework, in Masses in Flight, 73-125 (R. Cohen & F. Deng, eds., Brookings Instn. 1998).
    • Robert Goldman, International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and the Internally Displaced in The Modern World of Human Rights, in Essays In Honor of Thomas Buergenthal, 517-548 (Inter-Am. Inst. Hum. Rights 1996).
    • Robert Goldman, Internally Displaced Persons: Global and Regional Initiatives, Specific Protection Needs and the Importance of an Inter-Agency Framework, in Memoria Coloquio Internacional 10 Anos de la Declaracion de Cartagena Sobre Refugiados, 279-305 (UN High Commissioner For Refugees/ Inter-Am. Inst. Hum. Rights 1995).
    • Robert Goldman, International Humanitarian Law: Americas Watch Experience in Monitoring Internal Armed Conflicts, 9 Am. U. J. Intl. L. Policy 49 (1993).
    • Robert Goldman, Uruguay: Amnesty Laws in Violation of the American Convention, 49 The Rev. (Intl. Comm. Jurists) 37 (1993).
  • + Selected Presentations

    • Robert Goldman, Address, Nicola Calipari e le Sfide Della Nouva Intelligence Conference (Rome, Italy, Mar. 6, 2006).
  • + Selected Media Appearances