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.
Related Content - News & Blogs
BLOG: Cracking the code behind Egypt’s NGO crackdown
By Mariz Tadros
BLOG: India needs justice for all
By Annie Namala, Gabriele Koehler and Karuna Nundy
BLOG: Is ‘separate but equal’ really development?
The Saudi Industrial Property Authority is developing an industrial city for women workers, planned to open in 2013 in Hofuf, near Al-Ahsa.
Related Content - Events
CDI Seminar - New evidence on Farmer-centred participatory approaches
6 June 2013 13:00 to 14:30
IDS Convening Space
The Search for Stability through Stabilisation: Case Studies from Afghanistan and Nepal
28 May 2013 13:00 to 14:30
Room 221, Institute of Development Studies
The Damage Done: Inequality, Poverty and Vulnerability
6 May 2014 - 8 May 2014
Institute of Development Studies