Directing Compliance? Remedial Approach and Compliance with European Court of Human Rights Judgments

PluriCourts Lunch Seminar with Øyvind Stiansen.


Judicial impact is often limited by courts' reliance on other actors to implement judgments. An important question is whether and, if so, how courts can facilitate timely compliance. This article analyzes recent attempts by the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) to promote timely compliance by indicating appropriate remedies in its rulings. Remedial indications may facilitate more effective monitoring and enable pro-compliance actors to argue more forcefully that specific remedies are necessary. However, remedial indications also risk exacerbating compliance problems by reducing the flexibility of the respondent state or inviting accusations of judicial overreach. This article offers a novel empirical assessment of how judges' remedial strategy influences compliance. I show that judgments with remedial indications are implemented at a quicker rate than comparable judgments without such indications.

These results highlight the role judges can play in facilitating prompt compliance with their decisions.


PluriCourt Seminars are a forum for pluridisciplinary discussion of core issues relating to international courts and tribunals. PluriCourts scholars or invited speakers present new and ongoing research or comment on current questions. The seminars are open to everyone.

Tags: Human Rights
Published Sep. 20, 2018 8:58 AM - Last modified Oct. 3, 2018 1:16 PM