A Practitioners' Guide on Human Rights and Countering Corruption

Started in January 2015

Background

Corruption has been identified throughout the United Nations (UN) system as one of the main challenges to sustainable development and the realization of human rights.

The UN Human Rights Council (HRC) recognized that ‘transparent, responsible, accountable, open and participatory government, responsive to the needs and aspirations of the people, is the foundation on which good governance rests, and that such a foundation is one of the indispensable conditions for the full realization of human rights’.

Additionally, as the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) finds, a number of international documents signed under the auspices of both the UN and regional organizations have acknowledged the negative effects of corruption on the protection of human rights and on development.

As existing mechanisms under the UN Convention against Corruption provide little entry points for civil society, UN human rights mechanisms can also complement and strengthen existing anti-corruption mechanism.

Objectives

This research project, conducted in partnership with OHCHR and the Centre for Civil and Political Rights 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
  • Provide guidance and make practical recommendations for effectively using the UN human rights system in anti-corruption efforts.

RESEARCHERS

Picture of Felix Kirchmeier

Felix Kirchmeier

Manager of Policy Studies and Executive Director of the Geneva Human Rights Platform

Felix Kirchmeier oversees the conceptualization, development and implementation of policy research at the Geneva Academy. He is also the Executive Director of the Geneva Human Rights Platform.

Portrait of Richard Lapper

Richard Lapper

Human Rights Officer at the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)

OUTPUT

A Practitioners’ Guide on Human Rights and Countering Corruption

Published by the Geneva Academy and the Centre for Civil and Political Rights (CCPR Centre),  the Practitioners’ Guide on Human Rights and Countering Corruption intends to serve as a user-friendly practitioners’ manual and strategic advocacy tool to explore how a human rights-based approach, with its focus on the victims of corruption and state responsibility, can be used to complement and strengthen anti-corruption efforts.

To this end, it focuses primarily on how UN human rights mechanisms can be better used to report on corruption issues, and it provides guidance as well as practical recommendations on effectively integrating human rights into anti-corruption efforts.

This Guide is the outcome of research, several conferences and consultations carried out in partnership with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), and is based on a draft initiated by OHCHR. The Guide also received several inputs from legal and corruption experts, academics, NGO representatives and OHCHR staff. Its production has been possible thanks to the continued support by the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs.

Publications

Anti-corruption poster

Practitioners’ Guide on Human Rights and Countering Corruption

October 2019

Geneva Academy and CCPR Centre

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A New Guide Outlines the Potential of UN Human Rights Mechanisms in Countering Corruption

October 2019

Published by the Geneva Academy and the Centre for Civil and Political Rights, this guide explores how a human rights-based approach can be used to complement and strengthen anti-corruption efforts.

Read more >

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