Newest Debate: Internationalizing human rights organizations - why, how, and at what cost?

Human 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. Read on...


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Towards a multipolar civil society

With the world more multipolar than ever, why is civil society power still disproportionately located in the global North? A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Internationalizing human rights organizations. Español, Português

When internationalization causes more harm than good

Mashru1Focusing on the practicalities of internationalization neglects a vital and thorny question: is going global really in the interests of all rights groups? A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on internationalizing human rights organizations. Français, Españolالعربية

Closing the doors of justice? The South African Constitutional Court’s approach to direct access

Legal interventions can help improve poverty and inequality, but in South Africa the poor don’t have sufficient access to courts. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on economic and social rights. Español

To empower women, prioritize their social and economic rights

What we can learn about the connection between gender equality and socioeconomic rights from coffee farming communities in Colombia? A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on economic and social rights.  Español

Government repression and bureaucratic hoops spell gloom for rights groups in Bangladesh

Amidst tighter donor budgets for human rights, NGOs in Bangladesh are also grappling with increasingly intrusive governments. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate, funding for human rights.

One-way street: can internationalization ever be South-North?

North-South internationalization must be an alliance of equals, not simply a Northern expansion. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on internationalizing human rights organizations.

The international treaty on economic and social rights has positive impacts

When countries ratify the international treaty on economic and social rights, good things ensue, even for the world’s poorest nations. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on economic and social rights.  Español

How revolutionary are global human rights?

Facing global protests over the lack of social justice and democracy, are international human rights organizations ready to be more openly political? Or are human rights simply the wrong tool for the job?  EspañolFrançais

To prevent atrocities, count on politics first, law later

Recent studies pointing to the global deterrent effect of the ICC and international law in reducing atrocities are highly speculative. A contribution to the oGR debate on the ICC.  EspañolFrançais

How does professionalization impact international human rights organizations?

The more transnational human rights groups become, the more likely they are to professionalize. This, in turn, can influence the sector’s values. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on internationalizing human rights organizations. EspañolFrançais

The International Criminal Court at risk

With all-too-limited resources, the ICC is falling behind in the fight against impunity. Unless drastic measures are taken, it may never catch up. A contribution openGlobalRightsdebate on the ICCEspañolFrançais

Africa’s social movements present opportunities, not threats, for rights groups

After decolonization, many African political groups lost touch with the grassroots. Let’s not let the same happen to the continent’s professional human rights groups. Português, Español

Nationality laws – a new battleground for women’s equality

More than 60 countries deny women equal rights with men to acquire, change or retain their nationality – a new global campaign aims to change that.  Françaisالعربية

Palestine’s accession to the ICC may strengthen peace-first approach

While civil society pushes a rights-first agenda in Palestine, resistance towards Palestine’s ICC membership suggests that governments may not embrace this approach. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on the ICC.

The struggle for nonhuman rights

The Nonhuman Rights Project argues that certain animals should be legal persons. In the world of rights, what divides persons and things?  EspañolFrançais

Small steps forward? International pressure and accountability for atrocities in Sri Lanka

In countries like Sri Lanka – not party to the ICC – international pressure plays an important role in keeping a focus on the issue of accountability for mass atrocities. A contribution to the openGlobalRights’ debate on the ICCEspañolFrançais

Human rights – taking sides for Net Neutrality

‘Net neutrality’ means non-discriminatory access to an open internet, and new US rules – pushed by activists – block companies from undermining this. EspañolFrançaisالعربية

Do-It-Yourself-Aid: alternative funding sources for rights work?

Is “Do-It-Yourself-Aid” the answer to funding rights work? Anne-Meike Fechter describes this model, its funding and related implications, as a contribution to openGlobalRights’ funding for human rights debate. Español

In the UK, public discourse undermines support for human rights

The UK media does not do justice to the phrase, “human rights”. Rights activists must shift their framework to earn the public’s support. A contribution to openGlobalRights’ Human Rights: masses or elite movement debate.

Eliminating female genital mutilation by 2030

The UN’s proposed new development goals include a target to end harmful traditional practices like FGM by 2030. We now know the key steps needed to get there. Françaisالعربية

Firm yet flexible: keeping human rights organisations relevant

With issues and actors constantly evolving, traditional human rights organizations and activists must balance conventional and innovative methods. EspañolPortuguês

The Ongwen trial at the ICC: tough questions on child soldiers

LRA commander and former child soldier Dominic Ongwen’s forthcoming trial at the ICC risks obscuring the complex question of how to achieve justice when a victim is also a perpetrator. A contribution to openGlobalRightsICC debateEspañolالعربية