The Role of National Human Rights Systems in the Implementation of International Human Rights Standards and Recommendations

Completed in December 2021

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The proliferation of United Nations (UN) and regional human rights mechanisms demands a systemic study of their national dynamics and effects, as states struggle to keep up with their reporting obligations and the implementation of a growing number of recommendations. In addition, UN and regional human rights systems often overlap in scope, whilst not prescribing strict measures of implementation. This entails that all domestic actors (governmental actors, independent state actors, and non-state actors) have multiple roles to play in relation to the implementation of international human rights norms and recommendations.

Improving the system at the international level constitutes therefore only one side of the coin. We also need to understand whether the international human rights system may benefit from improved coordination and leveraging of synergies at the national level.

This project – coordinated by Dr Domenico Zipoli – analysed the role of national human rights systems (NHRSs) in implementing international human rights standards and recommendations.

Partners

Consultation partners for this project included the Defensoria de Los Habitantes de Costa Rica, the National Human Rights Commission of Mongolia, the National Human Rights Council of Morocco, the Danish Institute for Human Rights and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).

This research project was supported by the Permanent Mission of the Federal Republic of Germany to the Office of the United Nations and to the other International Organizations in Geneva.

NEWS

Dr Domenico Zipoli News

Our Research Fellow Dr Domenico Zipoli Successfully Defended his PhD Thesis

16 April 2021

Our Research Fellow Dr Domenico Zipoli just defended with success his PhD thesis The Power of Engagement: Assessing the Effectiveness of Cooperation between UN Human Rights Treaty Bodies and National Human Rights Institutions.

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Members of Parliament from the Hirshabelle State of Somalia, following proceedings during a courtesy visit to the Machakos County Assembly, Kenya News

National Strategies for Human Rights Monitoring and Implementation

12 February 2021

Our new publication analyses institutional cooperation initiatives at the domestic level designed to strengthen human rights implementation.

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Entrance of the Defensoria Publica News

Experts Discuss Strategies for more Effective National Human Rights Systems

17 December 2020

Experts from Geneva-based human rights mechanisms and representatives from more than 20 different national human rights systems discussed in an online meeting the implementation of human rights standards through national human rights systems.

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OUTPUT

Publication Clarifies the Role of National Human Rights Systems in the Implementation of International Human Rights Standards

Launched in January 2021, the Briefing National Human Rights Strategies: The Role of National Human Rights Systems in the Implementation of International Human Rights Standards analyses institutional cooperation initiatives at the domestic level designed to strengthen human rights implementation.

Based on collected evidence from three national contexts – Costa Rica, Mongolia, Morocco and Paraguay – it provides a classification of national monitoring and implementation strategies and consolidates into one publication the most recent efforts at systematizing the role and functions of NHRSs from both an academic and policy perspective. It represents a concrete and useful tool to further streamline the uptake of recommendations from the UN human rights system at the national level, notably by identifying best practices and formulating a series of key recommendations.

This publication was informed by a series of online workshops and an international conference that helped identify the best national practices that are most effective in the monitoring and implementation of international human rights recommendations.

Publications

Cover page of the Briefing

Briefing No°18: National Human Rights Strategies: The Role of National Human Rights Systems in the Implementation of International Human Rights Standards

January 2021

Domenico Zipoli

The Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights; The International Land Coalition

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Cover of the publication

Beyond the 2020 Treaty Body Review: The Role of National Human Rights Systems

June 2020

Domenico Zipoli

The Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights

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Cover page of the publication

Treaty Bodies’ Individual Communication Procedures: Providing Redress and Reparation to Victims of Human Rights Violations

May 2019

Claire Callejon, Kamelia Kemileva, Felix Kirchmeier

Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights

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Cover page of the publication

Optimizing the UN Treaty Body System

May 2018

Domenico Zipoli, Felix Kirchmeier, Kamelia Kemileva, Claire Callejon

The Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights

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MORE ON THIS THEMATIC AREA

A session of the UN Human Rights Committee News

New Publication Takes Stock of UN Treaty Body Review 2020 Implementation

27 May 2022

Our new Research Brief provides a comprehensive summary of the key decisions taken and recommendations given by all relevant stakeholders in implementing the recommendations of the TB Review 2020 process.

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Side event organized by the Geneva Human Rights Platform at the UN in New York News

From Geneva to New York to Discuss the Future of UN Treaty Bodies

10 June 2022

Our Geneva Human Rights Platform staff – Chloé Naret, Felix Kirchmeier and Domenico Zipoli – travelled to New York to discuss the future of UN treaty bodies.

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Cover page of the book Event

Book Launch: ‘Serious violations of Human Rights, On the Emergence of a New Special Regime’

12 October 2022, 18:00-20:00

This event marks the launch of our LLM alumna Ilia Siatitsa’s book ‘Serious violations of human rights, On the emergence of a new special regime’ published by Oxford University Press.

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Event

Roundtable Discussion on Governmental Perspectives on the Interaction of Rights and Beliefs in Multi-Religious Societies

5 October 2022, 14:00-17:00

This event – co-organized with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights – will discuss examples of putting the Faith for Rights Toolkit into practice.

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Prison visit by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in Haiti Short Course

The Implementation of International Human Rights Law

15 December - 17 January 2023

This online short course aims at presenting the institutions and procedures in charge of the implementation of international human rights law.

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Afghanistan, Parwan detention facility. Inside a room where detainees of the prison, separated by an acrylic glass, are allowed to meet with their families a couple of times per year with the help of the ICRC employees who facilitate the programme. Short Course

Preventing and Combating Terrorism

27 April - 8 June 2023

This online short course discusses the extent to which states may limit and/or derogate from their international human rights obligations in order to prevent and counter-terrorism and thus protect persons under their jurisdiction.

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 Chittagong (Bangladesh) ship breaking yard Project

A Practitioners' Guide on Human Rights and Countering Corruption

Completed in January 2015

This research project, aimed via the drafting of a practitioners’ guide on human rights and countering corruption, to clarify the conceptual relationship between human rights, good governance and anticorruption, demonstrate the negative impact of corruption on human rights and provide guidance and make practical recommendations for effectively using the UN human rights system in anti-corruption efforts.

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Project

HUMAN RIGHTS, BIG DATA AND TECHNOLOGY PROJECT

Started in May 2016

We are a partner of the Human Rights, Big Data and Technology Project, housed at the University of Essex’s Human Rights Centre, which aims to map and analyse the human rights challenges and opportunities presented by the use of big data and associated technologies. It notably examines whether fundamental human rights concepts and approaches need to be updated and adapted to meet the new realities of the digital age.

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Cover page of the book Publication

Research Handbook on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law

published on September 2022

Gloria Gaggioli, Robert Kolb, Pavle Kilibarda

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Cover of the publication Publication

Implementing the Treaty Body Review 2020 – Where do we stand

published on May 2022

Felix Kirchmeier, Chloé Naret, Domenico Zipoli

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