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Abstract

In this Article, Professor Laurence Burgorgue-Larsen, a renowned scholar in European and Latin-American law, explores flaws in the process by which members are appointed to the Inter-American Commission and Court of human rights, respectively. Seeking to strike a balance between "Idealism" and "Realism," Burgorgue-Larsen seeks methods for improving the independence and impartiality of the Commissioners and Judges in the Inter-American system in the hopes of ultimately lending greater credibility and legitimacy to the system as a whole. Drawing comparisons to the appointment of judges on national and international courts worldwide, Burgorgue-Larsen ultimately produces specific suggestions for improving the appointment process, ranging from scrutiny of candidates' human rights competencies and language skills to increasing efforts to diversify the candidate pool, particularly in terms of gender and ethnicity. She concludes by suggesting that greater structural changes, including adjustments to tenure and appointment procedures, might eventually prove the best solution for ensuring the survival of the Inter-American system.

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