For many, a prerequisite to peace is the development of compassion and respect. One path to cultivating that compassion and respect is to articulate a core set of rights that all human communities can embrace.  Building on the College's success of the Peace Studies Program, which is generously funded by the Schmidt Family Foundation, and supported by the Lynn-Wold-Schmidt Peace Studies Endowment, this initiative seeks to bring together the various entities on campus invested in the themes of Human Rights, Peace and Social Justice, both locally and globally.

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Based on the strength of our faculty´s teaching, research, and creative accomplishments and the dynamic community partners with whom we work, the Initiative  has established five central areas of inquiry and action, which we expect will grow as the Initiative matures and prospers.

> Inequalities & Social Inclusion

> Environmental Justice
   & Sustainability

> Mindfulness & Wellbeing

> Conflict, Violence
   & Genocide

> Creative Expression
   & Social Change


Mehmet Gurses Dr. Mehmet Gurses, Associate Professor in Political Science received funding from Zeki Fesih Mert to establish the Mert Family Peace Research Fund. The funding will support program and research efforts of Dr. Gurses in post-civil war peace building and democratization.

 The  Atas Peace Fund   was also created to support program and research efforts of Mehmet Gurses in post-civil war peace building and democratization to continue academic excellence in this field for other scholars and students at FAU





2015 Ethics Bowl

2015 Ethics Bowl:  This year's Ethics Bowl was a great success! 25 undergraduate students participated in the inaugural ‘Ethics Bowl’ on FAU’s Jupiter Campus on Friday, March 27, 2015. The event was sponsored by the Peace, Justice, and Human Rights Initiative with additional support from the Wilkes Honors College. Six teams were given an ethical controversy to debate, and after stating and defending their position, they fielded questions from four faculty judges. Among the topics were ‘Ethics in the workplace’, ‘privacy in public places’, and the extent to which the state can regulate people’s choices, such as, to refuse to undergo surgery or to purchase unhealthy foods. The winning team (shown in the photo along with the faculty judges) consisted of John Blozinski, Kaitlyn Shotwell, Sean Crary, Nolan McKenna, and Andrew Faris.

Tenzin Palmo

 Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo shares her welcome of the new year with an inspirational message of peace, courage and the wisdom of staying connected to yourself. See the highlights on Boca Mag TV.   Watch the video


Doris Sommer

A public lecture and panel discussion titled Art Works: Cultural Agents Tackle Urgent Social Challenges was held on Monday, October 6, 2014 at Florida Atlantic University’s University Theater. Attended by more than 150 people, this lecture featured Dr. Doris Sommer and was made possible by the University Galleries, the generosity of Lalita and Walter Janke, and the Peace, Justice, and Human Rights Initiative (PJHR).   More...

Human Rights Day 2014
Several leading legislators continued the push for equity during Human Rights Day at the Florida Capitol. State Senator Dwight Bullard from Miami, brought in noted leaders in education and human rights. Dr. Rose Gatens, Director of the Center for Holocaust and Human Rights Education at Florida Atlantic University and Gracia Bennish, President of United for Human Rights Florida were just two of the presenters. More…

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PJHR 2015 events

 >> Printable list of PJHR Events through Spring 2015. View list...

Memory-Public Space-Identity
>> The Department of Theatre and Dance in Florida Atlantic University’s Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters presents “The Last Night of Ballyhoo,” a play by Alfred Uhry. The play runs from Friday, April 10 through Sunday, April 19 in the Studio One Theatre, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton campus. More info...

Taner Ackam
>> Turkish historian Taner Açkam speak about the Ottoman-Turkish genocide against Armenians during World War I. Açkam is the first Turkish scholar to draw attention to the historicity of the Armenian Genocide.  He suffered persecution and imprisonment by the Turkish government for his work as early as 1976 when Amnesty Interntational adopted him as a prisoner of conscience. After escaping prison, he was able to gain political asylum in Germany where he received the Ph.D. degree writing about the question of Turkish responsibility for the Armenian Genocide.  In April 2006, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts presented him with a distinguished award for his outstanding work in human rights and fighting genocide denial. Currently, he holds the Kaloosdian/Mugar Chair in Armenian Genocide Studies at the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Clark University. The program will take place on Sunday evening April 19, at 7 pm on the Boca Campus in Performing Arts Building (PA100), next to the Schmidt Gallery. View flyer...  




 Last Modified 4/15/15