Rights

We aim to contribute to academic debates on human rights in a development context, engage with policymakers, advocacy organisations and donors on key issues, and influence the practice of implementing rights agendas in development programmes.

Human rights are increasingly important on the international development agenda. Rights-based projects and programmes are promoted and implemented across the world by donors, NGOs, academics and activists. Rights-based approaches to development have emerged out of several streams of thinking - out of a United Nations international legal framework; from a range of social, cultural and political struggles in both North and South; and a historical evolution from people seen as beneficiaries to being citizens. In practice, rights based approaches, whether employed by advocates or international agencies, are often based on a blend of all three of these.

Human rights are more meaningful and sustainable when they are claimed from the bottom up by people who live daily realities of poverty and inequality. Rights are not just an approach for development, they can be a real way for people to challenge power and structural inequalities. When people mobilise and struggle to gain their rights it may lead to better access to resources such as land, health, housing and water. Legal frameworks are important but many governments often violate people's rights as well as protect them. Many people use direct action strategies such as protesting and working with the media to draw attention to their rights.

IDS staff or research student More details

Photo of Anuradha Joshi, IDS researcher More details

Photo of Carlos Fortin More details

Photo of Cathérine Müller, Vulnerability and Poverty Reduction research team More details

Photo of Deepta Chopra, IDS Governance and Gender / Sexuality Research Fellow More details

Photo of Hani Morsi More details

IDS staff or research student More details

Photo of Lyla Mehta More details

Photo of IDS researcher, Mariz Tadros More details

Photo of Naomi Hossain, IDS Research Fellow More details

Photo of Pauline Oosterhoff, Research Fellow, Participation Power and Social Change More details

IDS staff or research student More details

Richard Crook is a Professorial Fellow with the Governance Team, IDS. More details

Photo of Rosalind Eyben More details

photo of Shilpi Srivastava More details

Photo of Sohela Nazneen More details

Bridging the Gap Evaluation

This is a mid-term evaluation of the Bridging the Gaps Programme a global program operating in 16 countries across all the main key populations at-risk for HIV. More details

Community Based Peace Processes in Myanmar

Since 2013 Danny Burns has been working with Stephen Gray and Josephine Roos on systemic approaches to peace in Northern Myanmar. The work is rooted in community perspectives on the issues that face local people in Kachin and Northern Shan State. More details

Engendering Men: Evidence on Routes to Change for Gender Equality (EMERGE)

Our goal is to enable stronger leadership for working with boys and men to promote gender equality. We will do this by gathering, inter-relating and analysing evidence and lessons. These will be strategically disseminated in targeted and accessible formats for improved learning, policy and practice. More details

Final External Review of the Cross-Cutting Disability Research Programme

This independent external review aimed to determine the extent to which the three year Cross-Cutting Disability Research Programme (CCDRP) in Nepal, India, Zambia, Uganda, and Kenya, has met its expected impact, outcome and outputs. More details

Participation and Gender Justice: Political Empowerment

This project is part of the Gender, Power and Sexuality Programme, funded by Sida. The project is working on two parallel initiatives, firstly, exploring political empowerment programmes for women and secondly, engaging with the international community to challenge and expose gendered forms of violence, particularly when this is politically motivated. More details

SendasAL - research and knowledge on gender inequality, social justice and poverty reduction

SendasAL is a joint project between BRIDGE and Uruguayan NGO Ciedur providing a Spanish web-space for sharing and promoting resources which support gender equality, social justice and poverty reduction in Latin America. More details

Sexuality and Local Voices

The Sexuality and Development project is one of the workstreams of the Gender, Power and Sexuality (GPS) Programme, funded by Sida. More details

Social, Technological and Environmental Pathways to Sustainability (STEPS) Centre

The STEPS Centre is an interdisciplinary global research and policy engagement hub, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council. It aims to develop a new approach to understanding, action and communication on sustainability and development. More details

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IDS publications on international development research

Lessons from Yowzit’s Practitioner Research and Learning Process

Making All Voices Count’s Research, Evidence and Learning component provides grants and mentoring support for real-time research, applied by tech for transparency and accountability practitioners, for project learning and improved practice. Practice papers document these grantees’ learning processes. More details

ER208_FrontCover

The Contribution of Digital Technology to Citizenship, Accountability and Rights: An Evidence Review

IDS Evidence Report 208 (2016)

The use of digital technologies has risen dramatically in the past century, building excitement among governments and technology experts about applying technology to improve accountability, transparency and the effectiveness of authorities. More details

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Social Accountability in Big Cities: Strategies and Institutions in Delhi and São Paulo

IDS Working Paper 471 (2016)

There are signs that public services can improve in big cities when the urban poor hold providers directly accountable – what we now call social accountability. We do not know, however, to what extent the urban poor, through their civil society groups, engage in forms of social accountability nor what strategies they use. More details

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Avenues for Donors to Promote Sexuality and Gender Justice

IDS Policy Briefing 120 (2016)

Donor agencies agree that addressing discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and/or gender identity (SOGI) is not only an important human rights issue but is also integral to efforts to alleviate poverty and promote sustainable development. More details

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The Global Importance of Including Mental Health Carers in Policy

IDS Policy Briefing 117 (2016)

Globally, there is growing awareness of the need to prioritise mental health as a development issue, with a historic step achieved by the inclusion of mental health in the Sustainable Development Goals. Less understood is the impact that providing care for people who are struggling with mental illness has on those who provide it. More details

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Using Participatory Statistics to Examine the Impact of Interventions to Eradicate Slavery: Lessons from the Field

CDI Practice Paper 16 (2016)

This CDI Practice Paper reflects on the use of participatory statistics to assess the impact of interventions to eradicate slavery and bonded labour. More details

Front Cover_What’s law got to do with it?

Gender, Sexuality and Social Justice: What's Law Got to Do with It?

Edited Collection (2016)

The contributions to this Edited Collection reveal the complexity of the deceptively simple question posed by its title: Gender, Sexuality and Social Justice: What’s Law Got to Do With It? More details

This is the cover to the report, 'Disability inclusion'.

Disability Inclusion

GSDRC Topic Guide (2015)

This guide summarises some of the most rigorous available evidence on the key debates and challenges of disability inclusion in development and humanitarian response. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Kenya: Year 3 Findings from the Life in a Time of Food Price Volatility Study in Mukuru And Lango Baya, Kenya

In particular, we were interested in a) the incentives for the consumption of processed foods, b) the worries attached to their consumption and c) the structures in place to address some of these concerns. More details

IDS publications on international development research

The Effect of Gender Equality Programming on Humanitarian Outcomes

This UN Women report presents the overall findings, draws comparative conclusions across the four case studies and discusses practical recommendations for integrating gender equality programming in future humanitarian interventions in ways that strengthen effectiveness and inclusiveness. More details

This is the cover to IDS Working Paper 456, 'Decrypting Copts’ Perspectives on Communal Relations in Contemporary Egypt through Vernacular Politics 
(2013–2014)'.

Decrypting Copts’ Perspectives on Communal Relations in Contemporary Egypt through Vernacular Politics (2013–2014)

IDS Working Paper 456 (2015)

The study of vernacular allows for an examination of multiple forms of citizen voice, agency and embedded relations that contribute to understandings of securities and insecurities in highly distinct ways. More details

Front cover of Frontiers of CLTS number 5 by Sarah House and Sue Cavill

Making Sanitation and Hygiene Safer: Reducing Vulnerabilities to Violence

This issue of Frontiers of CLTS focuses on the issue of safety and vulnerabilities to violence that women, girls and sometimes boys and men can face which are related to sanitation and hygiene. More details

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PDS ‘To Go’? ‘Portability’ of Rights through Real-time Monitoring: the Centralised Online Real-time Electronic PDS in Chhattisgarh, India

IDS Evidence Report 133 (2015)

Information and communications technology (ICT)-based reforms are increasingly being used to improve the delivery of public services. More details

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BOOSHTEE! Survival and Resilience in Ethiopia

IDS Evidence Report 129 (2015)

Although homosexuality is illegal in Ethiopia, same-sex behaviour is not prosecuted because the government of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia views homosexuality as a low law enforcement priority. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Realizing the Right to Sanitation in Deprived Urban Communities: Meeting the Challenges of Collective Action, Coproduction, Affordability, and Housing Tenure

World Development 68 (2015)

There are serious institutional challenges associated with low-cost sanitation in deprived urban communities. These include a collective action challenge, a coproduction challenge, a challenge of affordability versus acceptability, and a challenge related to housing tenure. More details

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Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights and Information and Communications Technologies: A Policy Review and Case Study from South Africa

IDS Evidence Report 113 (2015)

This report explores the intersection between sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and technological means of enhancing health. More details

IDS publications on international development research

La Vie en Temps de Volatilite du Prix des Produits Alimentaires: Évolution des Habitudes Alimentaires: Points de vue sur les Aliments Transformés et Les Aliments Dangereux

Le projet de recherche sur la sécurité alimentaire en temps de volatilité des prix mené par le Département socio-économie et anthropologie du développement (DSEAD) de l’Institut des Sciences des Sociétés avec le Financement de l’ONG Oxfam et en partenariat scientifique avec Institute of Development Studies (IDS) vise à décrire et analyser les conditions de vie en temps de volatilité des prix des aliments. More details

ER103 Front Cover

Policy Audit: Sexuality and Disability in Policies Affecting Chinese People with Disabilities

IDS Evidence Report 103 (2014)

This policy audit examines the cultural, political and economic spheres in China from the perspective of people with disabilities. More details

Promoting and Protecting Religious Diversity in the Middle East

Including People with Disabilities in Emergency Relief Efforts

IDS Rapid Response Briefing 8 (2014)

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that around 15 per cent of the world’s population, or one billion people, have some form of disability. More details

IDS publications on international development research

"The Constitution Lies To Us": Securing Accountability for the Right to Food in Kenya

Food Riots and Food Rights project report (2014)

Factors rooted in Kenya’s history and political economy have dampened citizen expectations of the state, thwarted popular mobilisation and generated weak state responses. This raises a question of responsibility. In this paper, we explore the failure and efforts to overcome them, before considering how accountability for hunger can be made the norm. More details

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