Graham Turnbull human rights essay competition and lecture
It was named in memory of Graham Turnbull, an English human rights solicitor killed in 1997.
The winner of the competition is awarded a £500 cash prize by the Graham Turnbull Memorial Fund at an annual lecture, joined by a prominent keynote speaker.
The competition was previously administered by the Law Society. From 2023, it will be solely organised by the Graham Turnbull Memorial Fund.
While we're sorry to no longer be hosting the competition and lecture, we are glad that its legacy – and that of Graham Turnbull – will continue.
This year's essay title is:
"What are the human rights implications of the failure of a state to take action to prevent global temperature rises which threaten the health or lives of their citizens?"
The deadline for entries is 5pm on Friday 20 October 2023.
The competition is open to all law students, trainee solicitors, pupil barristers, and solicitors and barristers within three years of admission or call at the closing date.
Essays must reach Tony Fisher, chair of trustees of the memorial fund, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org by 6pm on Friday 20 October 2023.
Entries should be a maximum of 2,000 words, including footnotes.
Proof of eligibility must be included.
The winning essay will be chosen by a panel of distinguished judges. The judges' decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
Download the full rules and eligibility criteria (PDF 110 KB), which must be read before entering.
About Graham Turnbull
Graham Turnbull was an English solicitor from Yorkshire.
He travelled to Rwanda in 1994 where he worked as a human rights monitor on the United Nations Human Rights Mission, investigating reprisal killings in the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide.
He was killed in 1997, aged 37, along with four others, in an apparent state-sanctioned ambush as they travelled in clearly marked UN vehicles.
The killings were condemned internationally and led to the UN temporarily suspending its operations in the region and withdrawing aid workers.
Discover previous essay questions and read the winning entries:
‘The roots of many of our basic rights go back to Magna Carta, whose 800th anniversary is being celebrated in 2015.
Given this important legacy, to what extent would proposals to repeal the Human Rights Act 1998 and pull out of the European Convention on Human Rights impact on the protection of human rights in the UK and around the world?’