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Dear OpenGlobalRights (OGR) Readers, 

We are very excited to share OpenGlobalRights' new website with you!   

OGR launched here as a section of openDemocracy in June 2013 with support from the Ford Foundation and the University of Minnesota. Since then our team and network has grown and we have launched 18 thematic series and published over 1400 articles and translations in 24 languages. These have been authored by over 580 human rights activists, scholars, donors and practitioners in more than 60 countries. 

Over the last year, we solicited and received feedback on our progress from partners, evaluators and readers. With this input and much deliberation, we decided to develop a new independent platform to continue facilitating critical exchanges on human rights strategies and policy worldwide. On the new site, we will continue to publish articles in many languages while also making other resources such as cutting-edge data on public opinion towards human rights available.  

As we transition to our new site and begin publishing content there, our full archive will remain here on openDemocracy and we will continue to disseminate content through openDemocracy’s networks in the coming months. 

Thank you for your ongoing support and readership! We look forward to growing with it at www.opeglobalrights.org

All the best,

The OGR Team


Common ground and preserving differences

Xiaoyu Pu responds to strong arguments from David Schlesinger and Hugh Shapiro who have both challenged Pu's views on whether China could one day be a normative power. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Misunderstanding our mission

The founder of Human Rights Watch tells Stephen Hopgood and James Ron that this organisation is globalizing itself; though it has a long way to go, over time it will prove effective. But human rights and social justice are not the same thing. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Economic and Social Rights.

A reformed role model: India, a reluctant rights promoter

A reply to Meenakshi Ganguly and Aseem Prakash.  A far more instructive question they might have asked is, ‘is it in India’s interests to promote rights globally?’ - and regrettably the answer is ‘no’. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

A global human rights movement?

As a rallying call human rights remain somewhat cold and ethereal - ‘Scandinavian religion’ as Debray puts it, mockingly. Is it any wonder, therefore, that their appeal still remains limited to global elites? A contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Human rights: mass or elite movement?

Deeds, not words

Xiaoyu Pu’s article notes that Chinese foreign policy – including human rights negotiations – seeks “common ground while preserving differences.” This reflects a world lacking in moral authority, the author suggests, and China could do better. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

The end of a temporary advantage

Western powers are indeed trying to tell China how to behave, both implicitly and explicitly, but the idea of the West needs rethinking. A response to Xiaoyo Pu in the 'emerging powers and human rights ' debate. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Leaving the struggle for women’s rights out of your account

The model for addressing women’s human rights, South and North, differs greatly from the definition of human rights originally promoted by the corporate human rights entities and, indeed, still promoted by many states and institutions. A response to Stephen Hopgood’s claimA contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Brazil too ‘traditional’ to be a global human rights leader

The author responds to Camila Asano’s prediction in ‘Emerging powers and human rights’ of the considerable potential for Brazil to contribute positively to a global human rights agenda. A lot will have to change in the ‘global South agenda’ before that happens.A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human RightsPortuguês

‘Human Rights’ must join activists in social struggle

Stephen Hopgood wrote in ‘Emerging powers and human rights’ of the not always subtle distinction and looming abyss today between what he calls ‘Human Rights’ and ‘human rights’. Our author picks up the gauntlet he has thrown down. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Economic and Social Rights.

Misplaced priorities? Global leadership and India’s domestic neglect of human rights

The world came to Gandhi to learn about his methods; he did not go abroad to preach and exercise global leadership. The Indian elite can perhaps learn from this. A response to Meenakshi Ganguly's call to India to take up its role as human rights global leader. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Mexico can lead the way in protecting migrant workers worldwide

Mexico has deployed few resources to take up the cases of horrific abuse of Central American trans-migrants and of its migrants in the US. It is in a unique position to take up this cause and create a model for the rest of the world. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights. Español

New powers won’t play by old rules

Expecting new global powers to promote human rights abroad via the United Nations assumes that they will play by the old rules and - if such pressure is to be effective - that human rights factors will condition their bilateral relationships; neither is likely. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human RightsEspañol.

Can India be an international human rights leader?

As an emerging economy with a growing work force, India believes it should have a voice in global affairs. No one disagrees. But then, on crucial foreign policy issues, India should take initiatives that seek an end to human suffering. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights Español中国语文हिंदी

Can Brazil promote change without changing itself?

Brazil has an adroit capacity to identify problems in the way human rights are being addressed internationally. But Brazil needs to set an example through its own actions. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights. Português, Français, Español.

Encouraging stronger engagement by emerging powers on human rights

Resentment of the west is making emerging powers hold back when they could be using their strengths and experiences to challenge the world’s abusive regimes. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights. Español, العربية, Português.

Can China be a normative power?

Until now, the west has been attempting to tell China how to behave when it comes to human rights. But things are changing. Increasingly, China is engaging in international debate over rights. Does China aim to redefine the norms? A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights. 中国语文, Español, العربي.

Human rights in the vernacular

The road to greater ownership of human rights by emerging powers is a bumpy one. But it will lead to a more real, and less utopian approach. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights. Español, 中国语文, العربية

South Africa’s foreign policy: between idealism and the realpolitik of being an emerging power

More than most, South Africa is expected to be a defender and a promoter of human rights, because of its past. The country has the potential to lead the way in pushing for a more democratic international order. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human RightsEspañol, Français, العربية

The struggle for a truly grassroots human rights movement

Pilot testing Using cutting-edge human rights perception polls, the authors explore links between social class and domestic human rights movements in Mexico, Colombia, Morocco, and India. Social elites, they find, are better connected to human rights representatives than the masses. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on "Emerging Powers and Human Rights" and "Human Rights: Mass or Elite Movement?". Español, Français, العربية, 中国语文, हिंदी, Português, Türkçe

Human rights: past their sell-by date

It is activists, not states who will make a difference in future. But western-led rights organizations may have seen their day. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights. Español, العربي.

Challenges and opportunities in a changing world

Emerging powers are starting to wield some clout on global rights but they need to do much more says Amnesty International’s Secretary General. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights. Türkçe, Español, 中国语文, العربية

Turkey and the neo-Ottoman approach to human rights

Erdoğan is trying to carve out a role for Turkey as the protector of the rights of Muslims worldwide while punishing dissent within its own borders. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.  Español, Türkçe, Россия.