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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

July 2017


The “new kind of debate on Global Human Rights” should take place at community pockets of global South

The new debate should be organised around concrete issues such as neglect, denial and marginalisation, which people on social margins of the world are facing on a daily basis. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Rights reconceived: India’s new approach

Instead of viewing India’s role in global human rights from a foreign policy perspective, it is also important to examine whether India offers any lessons on human rights for other states by providing an alternative to the dominant discourse on rights. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Economic and Social Rights.

Human rights, “human beings,” and Israel

As a global political project, “human rights” has little resonance for most Israeli Jews. As Israel continues to fly in the face of hegemonic international norms, what can tip the balance? A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights. 

The 'no grassroots' critique of human rights: fair or misleading?

The dichotomy set up between elite-driven and grassroots-driven human rights progress might be a false one. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Human rights: mass or elite movement?

México, la permanente encrucijada y su (¿cínica?) política migratoria

México comienza a dar pasos para convertirse en un actor global, como lo menciona Carlos Heredia, para proteger a las y los migrantes en el mundo. Sin embargo, para hacerlo debe empezar en y desde casa.

Making universalism resonate locally

To build support for human rights among the Israeli public, we need to not only address the public's political beliefs and security concerns, but also a much more fundamental critique of the human rights movement as unresponsive to religious beliefs and traditional valuesA contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Human rights: mass or elite movement?  עברית ,العربية

Can we decolonise human rights?

"Who defines the concept of human rights?" Stephen Hopgood asks. The answer will come from a new North-South dialogue building on the foundations of the dominant eurocentric history, which could reclaim the emancipatory potential of the human rights tradition. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human RightsEspañol, Português, 中国语文, Deutsch.

Making women's rights human rights

The story of how women's rights became part of the international human rights movements shows the influence of local movements on global change - and that international agendas need to listen to community priorities. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Misunderstanding the mass politics of the rights mission

The problem with Aryeh Neier’s argument is that, historically, there has been no way to separate efforts to promote general human rights from rising groups’ political efforts to protect their own social interests and values. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Human rights from the bottom up: beyond the ideological export model

How do we understand the transformation of the global human rights movement in a multipolar world? "Endtimes" as Stephen Hopgood argues? On the contrary: the demise of human rights will only come when activists no longer seek to own them. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Making human rights matter to the marginalised

Human rights organizations must adopt a new approach to produce positive change for - and stay relevant to - those who need advocacy the most. A way forward to make human rights a truly grassroots movementA contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Human rights: mass or elite movement?

Beyond geopolitics: realizing international human rights globally

International organizing has been and will continue to be one of the strongest forces propelling human rights forward. But the best way to realize human rights on the ground across multiple national contexts is surely to place primacy on local advocates working within their own environments.A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

International NGOs supporting grassroots movements: who talks and who listens?

In a world where elites cannot be trusted to look out for the interests of the poor, mass mobilisations are important. We need to examine the links between INGOs and grassroots movements, and find out who talks and who listens. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Human rights: mass or elite movement?

It begins and ends with power

The author acknowledges his supporters, but he answers his critics. (See related articles). It is political leverage, not human rights, that make things happen. The wealthy and influential have it, the poor do not except when organized in sufficiently large numbers. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Is China a challenge to the existing international order?

What does a rising China mean to the world? While some countries take China as a salient threat, others regard it as their role model for development and governance. Jiangnan Zhu responds to Xiaoyu PuA contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Moving beyond cold war visions and endtime prophecies: claiming all human rights for all (once and for all)

The myth that economic, social and cultural rights are merely aspirational is still being perpetuated. The human rights framework reaffirms the interrelatedness of all rights and provides essential tools for social justice movements of all kinds, say the authors in response to Aryeh Neier and Stephen HopgoodA contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

The antithesis of elitism

The author refutes the charge of elitism. Such long, unpaid and mostly unsung work undertaken by local Amnesty groups was its antithesis. And then there was the start-up support for small local ngo’s drawing on international human rights law. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Human rights: mass or elite movement?

Global Human Rights: For futures unlike the past

Vijay K. Nagaraj responds to Aryeh Neier, criticising his construction of social justice. Neier’s discomfort with mass mobilization, he argues, reveals an uncomfortable truth about the global human rights movement. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights.

Human rights and social justice: the in(di)visible link

The distinction that Aryeh Neier draws between human rights and social justice is premised on a limited notion of what constitutes “power”, argue Ignacio Saiz and Alicia Ely Yamin. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Economic and Social Rights.

Against reductionist views of human rights

César Rodríguez-Garavito responds to Stephen Hopgood and Aryeh Neier, criticising both sides of the debate for an all too simplistic view of the actors, the content and the strategies of the international human rights movement. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Emerging Powers and Human Rights. Español

Human rights are also about social justice

Drawing on the central practices and aims of a traditional human rights organization as described by Aryeh Neier in his account of Human Rights Watch, let me respond, the author says, by imagining its suitability and relevance to a social justice agenda. A contribution to the openGlobalRights debates on Emerging Powers and Human Rights and Economic and Social Rights.

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.