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openGlobalRights Debates

18 April 2015

openGlobalRights Debates

Mental-health_inset_1.png

The mental health and well-being of advocates has often been neglected by human rights organizations, funders, and advocates themselves. This series examines a range of critical questions and issues including: research conducted on the mental health impacts of human rights work, obstacles to advancing mental health and well-being in this field, and innovative approaches to prevent and alleviate the harmful effects of human rights work. Read on...

 

Perps_inset_1.png Would activists be more effective at reducing human rights abuses if they tried to understand why perpetrators commit acts of violence and abuse? If so, what are ethical ways of engaging with perpetrators? This debate explores various perspectives on whether, when and how to engage with perpetrators of human rights abuses. Read on...

 

 

Trump_Inset_1.png The day after Donald Trump’s surprising victory, openGlobalRights asked leading human rights figures, “How should human rights activists respond?” Here, we curate the responses we receive, as leading scholars, activists and NGO leaders debate how best to grapple with the rise of an explicitly rights-rejecting superpower. Read on...

 

 

Data_Inset_1 .png The global human rights community has access to more data, from a wider range of sources, than ever before. However, it is not always clear how reliable and helpful these data are, and how to best use them in human rights work. In this series, openGlobalRights authors explore the types, sources and uses of human rights data. Read on...

 

 

ClosingSpace_Inset_11.png Civil society organizations (CSOs) worldwide are under significant pressure as restrictions on foreign funding, barriers to registration, intervention in CSOs’ internal affairs, and other forms of harassment have proliferated. The debate will examine the evidence and experience of closing space in different contexts and sectors and identify the innovative responses. Read on...

Sub-debates: Local funding for human rights - expanding supportNew business models for human rights: What innovative strategies and structures?

 

Refugees_Inset_1.png The UN says there are almost 15 million refugees in the world, the highest number since 1993. Continued instability in the Middle East and North Africa suggests this number will grow. The international regime governing the reception and treatment of refugees was put in place at the end of World War II. Does it remain ‘fit for purpose’? Read on...

 

 

Economic_Inequality_1_0.pngExtreme inequality is one of the defining issues of our time, with the gap between rich and poor widening across the globe. But while economic inequality has become a prominent issue on the international development agenda, as well as in national political debates in many countries, the human rights community has barely begun to address its implications for the full range of human rights. This oGR debate will explore the consequences for human rights of rising wealth and income inequality. Read on...

 

Evaluation_HR_Inset_1.png2015 has been declared the “international year of evaluation”. Human rights organisations face a difficult dilemma with regards to evaluation and impact assessment of their work. Although it is required and demanded by most donors, existing tools and methods are mostly unfit for human rights work. In this debate, we explore some of the different tools and methods used for evaluating human rights, the pros and cons of how rights work is evaluated, as well as the budding methods and opportunities in this relatively unexplored field. Read on...

 

Public_opinion_Inset_1.jpg In recent years, a growing number of scholars and handful of activists have begun using opinion polls to better understand the public’s attitude towards human rights issues. In this debate authors explore the following questions: What research has been done in this area, and how useful is it? Should human rights groups use polling results to adjust their messages and strategy? If so, when and how? What additional research should scholars be doing and how can they work with activists? Should foundations and other donors support this work? If yes, how? Read on...

 

IHRO_inset_1.pngHuman rights organizations, networks and movements are expanding, broadening, and internationalizing. Groups based in the global north are trying to sink southern roots, while groups based in the south are trying to become more cross regional and global. Donors, such as Ford Foundation and the Open Society Foundations, are supporting these changes. In this debate we explore why, how, and at what cost internationalization is taking place in the global human rights community. Read on...

 

ICC_Inset_1.pngIn the face of ongoing atrocities in so many countries, that continue to shock the conscience of humanity, it seems beyond doubt that the world needs an International Criminal Court. But can this “utopian” project succeed in an increasingly divided world, where politics, not law, still guides the great powers and the institutions they control? Read on...

 

 

Economic_Social_Inset_1.pngThere is continued controversy as to whether the human rights to food, housing, education, or health deserve such recognition or are properly the subject of legal protection and adjudication. Should struggles for social justice rely on the courts? How does the reframing of these struggles in the language of human rights help? Read on...

 

 

High_Commissioner_Inset_1.pngA new High Commissioner, Prince Zeid Ra’ad Zeid al-Hussein of Jordan, has just been appointed and he will take up his post in August. Prince Zeid faces many challenges. How should he proceed? In a world of competing priorities, how to choose? What issues risk being ignored? What should distinguish this High Commissioner’s term in office? Read on...

 

 

Religion_Inset_1.pngIn many circles, the words “religion” and “human rights” are seen as opposing concepts. For many activists working on women’s rights, LGBT concerns, and more, organized faith communities and their leaders are invariably a big part of the the problem, and only rarely, if ever, part of the solution. This view, however, vastly underestimates existing and potential points of collaboration. In this debate, we explore the possibilities across regions, faith traditions, and issues. Read on...

 

Global FundingBig transformative ideas need an organizational infrastructure, and that infrastructure requires resources to thrive. How do human rights groups around the world mobilize the money and other inputs they need? What impacts do these methods have on the work of human rights organizations, and on their relations with governments, the general public, and others? Read on...

Sub-debates: Local funding for human rights - expanding support, New business models for human rights: What innovative strategies and structures?

 

Masses_Elites_Inset_1.pngAre human rights principles, policies, and approaches coming down to earth? Can local civil society groups overcome the international human rights machinery's cultural, educational, and social barriers? Can they develop strong and explicit human rights constituencies among ordinary people? The articles in this section address these questions issues head-on. Read on... 

Sub-debates: Human Rights Resonance in Mexico, Human Rights Resonance in Israel and Palestine

 

R2P SyriaResponsibility to Protect (R2P) was intended to build consensus for international action, yet no such consensus is visible as regards Syria. What future for R2P? Will a unilateral US strike further undermine the doctrine, or, conversely, prove its importance in legitimizing action when the Security Council is divided? Can a new consensus be forged to support robust action to protect civilians, and if so on what terms? Read on...

 

 

Emerging Powers

In our first discussion our contributors evaluated the stance that newly powerful states take towards human rights. Some speak of BRICS, others of TIMBIs, and still others of IBSA; these and other acronyms abound. All share the notion that world power is increasingly diverse, that the west, and especially its declining influence in the face of emerging power, both raise serious questions about the future of human rights. Read on...

 

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