Identifying and assessing the implementation of human rights decisions

Donald, Alice ORCID logoORCID:, Long, Debra and Speck, Anne-Katrin (2020) Identifying and assessing the implementation of human rights decisions. Journal of Human Rights Practice . ISSN 1757-9619 [Article] (Published online first) (doi:10.1093/jhuman/huaa003)

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Assessing the extent to which states have implemented the decisions of supranational human rights bodies is a challenging task. It requires supranational bodies—be they judicial, quasi-judicial or political—to create an evidence-based public record of the status quo of implementation at any point in time and determine whether the measures taken do, in fact, satisfy the requirements of the decision. This, in turn, relies upon states engaging in good faith, victims having a voice, and civil society organisations seizing the opportunity to influence the follow-up process. Using empirical data from interviews in selected states in the African, Inter-American and European regions, and within regional and United Nations bodies, this article argues that in no human rights ‘system’ are all these expectations met, in part because follow-up work is inadequately resourced. It argues that supranational bodies should proactively seek out diverse sources of information and adopt more transparent and responsive working methods so as to enable ‘real time’ participation by all interested parties. The article concludes with recommendations for supranational bodies, and state and non-state actors.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Law > Law and Politics
Item ID: 28212
Notes on copyright: This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced version of an article accepted for publication in Journal of Human Rights Practice following peer review. The version of record Alice Donald, Debra Long, Anne-Katrin Speck, Identifying and Assessing the Implementation of Human Rights Decisions, Journal of Human Rights Practice, , huaa003, is available online at:
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Depositing User: Alice Donald
Date Deposited: 18 Nov 2019 15:00
Last Modified: 29 Nov 2022 18:21

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