- The historical and intellectual origins of the concept of human rights
- Differing perspectives on the role and content of rights
- Interpretation and analysis of human rights norms, particularly treaty interpretation
- Doctrinal analysis, including close reading of cases and precedents and an ability to compare approaches from different fora and jurisdictions.
- The functioning and evolution of international and regional mechanisms established to oversee and promote compliance with human rights
- The political and legal interaction between national governments and human rights law and institutions
- The role of non-governmental actors in promoting human rights