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“Julian

Julian Richards is openDemocracy’s managing editor.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

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As elected governments increasingly launch power grabs and smear campaigns against their critics, NGOs across Latin America must work together to restore democracy, exchange innovative practices, and combat regional authoritarianism.

Trends in Google searches show that most internet users are interested in the human rights during crises or policy changes, often due to media prompting. How do we become more than passive recipients of human rights?

Legal empowerment enables poor and marginalized communities to be partners in development and decision-making, and new technologies make it possible for women in India to speak out against systemic problems.

Although UN human rights bodies have criticized the persecution of the Rohingya, UN agencies inside Myanmar have been far too deferential to the authorities. 

Naming and shaming may be less important as a foreign policy tool to promote rights, but the careful documenting and publicizing of rights abuses remains an essential strategy.

Activism against environmental exploitation in Ecuador requires going up against titanic powers, and legal empowerment has helped indigenous groups do just that.

Human rights have always been subject to efforts at misappropriation and manipulation for political ends—but power and agency must remain in the hands of those who are suffering oppression and injustice.

Situations of inhumane treatment and abuses of power are where we need human rights the most, and the family separation issue in the United States is symptomatic of a much broader global problem.

With populist leaders stoking nationalism and violating basic rights, traditional advocacy strategies are losing their effectiveness. The human rights movement needs a new playbook.

Many governments have released official strategies to promote AI systems leaving the public with few human rights protections.

Technology can raise awareness and spark collective action, but it can also deepen gender divides and provide platforms for harassment. How can ICT companies better protect their users?

The US said it quit the UN Human Rights Council because it couldn’t reform it – but though others share some blame, the US’ own tactics undermined its effort.

Erdoğan will likely succeed in removing the only genuine political opposition in the Turkish Parliament. And it will all, technically, be legal if the ECtHR does not step in.

Countries exposed to the worst impacts of climate change, like Myanmar, should consider establishing Climate Land Banks to meet the looming problem of massive climate displacement.

Strengthening the resilience of the women’s rights movement requires feminists to place digital security firmly at the center of our engagement with the internet.

We need to act upon the insights that we glean from AI: technology is not a replacement for the political will needed to drive change.

Ten years after sexual violence in war was officially recognized as a threat to peace and security, sexual violence against men and boys still receives very little policy and research attention—and that needs to change.

Modest investments into local fundraising capacity could transform the global human rights community into a truly sustainable and autonomous force, rather than an embattled, foreign aid-dependent sector.

An expanding range of literature examines the effectiveness of national human rights institutions, and 25 years after the Paris Principles, a recent study draws out some of the common findings.

A new law in Israel seeks to stigmatize NGOs that receive foreign funding—but evidence suggests that countries should welcome rather than fear the foreign funding of NGOs.