The Geneva Human Rights Platform (GHRP) is collaborating with the Centre for Human Rights at the University of Pretoria and the Office of the United Nations (UN) High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in the development of an online database aimed at assessing the impact of the UN human rights treaty body (TB) system.
The ‘Impact Database 2020+' will be an open-access, online database that allows interested parties worldwide to have access to core sources – documents available in the UN system or at the domestic level – that provide evidence of the direct impact of UN human rights treaties and of decisions taken by the related UN TBs. ‘Impact database 2020 +’ will thus serve as a ‘first-stop shop’ for those who wish to obtain the full picture of impact globally, or on any particular subject, country or geographical area.
This database will constitute an essential tool for all domestic stakeholders working with UN TBs, including civil society organizations and academics. Their direct input to the database and the resulting data made available in digital format are expected to increase domestic ownership of TB processes as well as strengthening the monitoring and follow-up of TBs’ recommendations by all stakeholders of the system.
Centre for Human Rights at the University of Pretoria
In 2021, the research team will develop a network of core partner universities – around 50 with one per country –, which will act as national focal points for the database. Throughout the year, selected national focal points/partner universities will be trained on how to collect ‘country documentation’.
Clinical groups at leading universities such as Harvard, the Geneva Academy, Bristol and others have already started to participate by collecting such information.
At the Geneva Academy, a team of students from the LLM programme is already working on the identification of TB impact in a number of selected countries, under the supervision of Dr Domenico Zipoli and the GHRP team. Furthermore, 20 contacts have already been established through an edited book initiative led by Professors Christof Heyns, Frans Viljoen and Rachel Murray on the impact of the UN human rights treaty system on the domestic level (forthcoming, 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.
Olivier Chamard/Geneva Academy
In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most meetings and exchanges had to take place online.
This short course, which can be followed in Geneva or online, focuses on the specific issues that arise in times of armed conflict regarding the respect, protection and fulfilment of human rights. It addresses key issues like the applicability of human rights in times of armed conflict; the possibilities of restricting human rights under systems of limitations and derogations; and the extraterritorial application of human rights law.
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This research project examined the impact of innovation and the development of new information technologies on human rights.
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