Council of Europe Pro Merito medal presented to Professor of Law

Published: 13 March 2012

Professor Jim Murdoch, Professor of Public Law at the University of Glasgow has been awarded the Pro Merito medal of the Council of Europe.

Professor Jim Murdoch, Professor of Public Law at the University of Glasgow has been awarded the Pro Merito medal of the Council of Europe.  The medal is the highest distinction granted by the Secretary General to individuals or organisations in recognition of their commitment to the Council of Europe’s values and work.

The medal was presented to Jim for his work in human rights education and in particular, the Human Rights Project, now in its 20th year.

The project was awarded the Slaughter & May Partnership Award for innovation in the teaching and learning of law, and also one of the University’s first ‘Teaching Excellence Awards’ in 2006. This optional Honours course is offered as an alternative to the regular teaching and assessment arrangements in the class of European Human Rights Law, but seeks to promote academic knowledge through group work rather than through seminar attendance.

Professor Murdoch said: “I’m honoured to be recognised by the Council of Europe in this way. I am delighted that this has forged further links between the Council of Europe and the University of Glasgow.”

Professor Rosa Greaves, the Head of the School of Law said “It is wonderful for Professor Murdoch to be recognised for his innovative and groundbreaking teaching method in the area of Human Rights law and we are delighted for him.

The award was presented to him by the Deputy Secretary General, Maud de Boer-Buquicchio in the presence of the President and other members of the Court, in the European Court, Strasbourg.

In expressing his thanks to the Council of Europe on behalf of the University of Glasgow for two decades of assistance with this course, the Deputy Secretary General noted the extent to which previous participants of these mooting exercises had been enthused to go on to work in a range of careers furthering respect for human rights and the rule of law, while others had also become involved in Council of Europe activities in helping promote awareness of human rights.

Notes for editors

Professor Jim Murdoch

Professor Jim Murdoch joined the School of Law in 1979 after qualifying as a solicitor. He read Law as an undergraduate at Glasgow and has an LLM from the University of California at Berkeley. He was Head of the School of Law between 1996 and 2000. He has taught at the Universities of Mainz and Hamburg and was a professeur stagiaire with the Directorate of Human Rights of the Council of Europe in France. His research interest are in domestic and European human rights law. He is a regular participant in Council of Europe seminar programme visits to Central and East European states and has developed a particular interest in non-judicial human rights enforcement mechanisms.

Council of Europe

The Council of Europe, based in Strasbourg (France), now covers virtually the entire European continent, with its 47 member countries. Founded on 5 May 1949 by 10 countries, the Council of Europe seeks to develop throughout Europe common and democratic principles based on the European Convention on Human Rights and other reference texts on the protection of individuals. Our objectives

The primary aim of the Council of Europe is to create a common democratic and legal area throughout the whole of the continent, ensuring respect for its fundamental values: human rights, democracy and the rule of law.

Human Rights... Democracy... Rule of Law

These values are the foundations of a tolerant and civilised society and indispensable for European stability, economic growth and social cohesion. On the basis of these fundamental values, we try to find shared solutions to major problems such as terrorism, organised crime and corruption, cybercrime, bioethics and cloning, violence against children and women, and trafficking in human beings. Co-operation between all member states is the only way to solve the major problems facing society today.

For more information contact Cara MacDowall in the University of Glasgow Media Relations Office on 0141 330 3683 Mobile: 07875 203 387 or email


First published: 13 March 2012

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