UNCeiling5_attributeMiquel Barceló - Room XX (detail). Image- United Nations

Project leader(s)

The research project ‘Strengthening the International Human Rights System: Rights, Regulation and Ritualism’ is funded by an ARC Laureate Fellowship and awarded to Hilary Charlesworth. The project will run until 2015. The aim of Laureate Fellowships is to support research excellence and to develop a new generation of researchers, thus building Australia’s international competitive research capacity. Further information about ARC Laureate Fellowships is available on the ARC website.

This project focuses on a problem endemic to the international human rights system: why are international human rights standards widely accepted in theory but so hard to implement in practice?

Although the international community has created a complex and sophisticated system of human rights standards, these principles are regularly sidelined or ignored by countries that have accepted them. The project draws on regulatory scholarship to analyse how states respond to human rights principles, focusing particularly on the notion of ritualism. The concept of regulatory ritualism means formal participation in a system of regulation while losing sight of its substantive goals. The project documents techniques of ritualism employed in the international human rights system and explores their relationship to the weaknesses and failures of the system. It identifies ways of resisting forms of human rights ritualism that undermine human rights commitments. The major intellectual aims of the project are to:

  • identify and analyse the ways that regulatory ritualism operates in the international human rights system through a series of case studies; and
  • develop new theoretical models to improve the implementation of international human rights principles.

The project’s strategic aims are to:

  • support and train a new generation of international human rights scholars;
  • build Australian capacity in analysis of international human rights practices; and
  • create new research linkages with international human rights organisations, particularly the United Nations.

Regarding Rights blog

Regarding Rights provides a forum for voices from activism and academia to comment on important issues in human rights.

Human rights reading group

The Human Rights Reading Group is for PhD students and scholars interested in discussing ideas and issues in human rights law, theory and practice. The group meets once a month to talk about a different text – whether journal article, book chapter, film or novel – that touches on human rights.

Visiting PhD Scholar program

The Laureate Fellowship supports a scholarship program allowing talented Australian and international PhD scholars who are working in the field of human rights to visit the CIGJ for periods of between six to eight weeks.

Working papers

Fireworks

AAL Symposium Victoria: nurturing and protecting independent advisers and organs of government

14 September 2015

Hilary Charlesworth to present at AAL symposium on nurturing and protecting independant advisers and organs of government.

female volleyballer

Regarding Rights blog - Kate Henne

11 September 2015

Authorities have not yet abandoned deeply held gendered beliefs about what kind of women should be eligible to participate in elite sport

UN HR Council by Jean-Marc-Ferré

Regarding Rights blog - Mareike Riedel

28 August 2015

Neutral on the surface and designed to be “one law for all,” planning regulations in fact often disadvantage minority religions.

Fractal hexagon image Image by Kevin Dooley on Flickr under the CC BY 2.0 license

New working paper series - rituals of human rights workshop

27 August 2015

This new working paper series is part of the ‘Strengthening the International Human Rights System: Rights, Regulation and Ritualism’ research project funded by the ARC’s Laureate Fellowship scheme.

Press cameras at the UN

Book launch: Human rights and the universal periodic review - rituals and ritualism

24 August 2015

Human Rights and the Universal Periodic Review: Rituals and Ritualism book to be launched at Australian Consulate in Geneva

Pages

 law&justicecluster

Law & justice

RegNet is one of world’s leading centres for socio-legal work on Law and Justice. Our work on international law, rule of law, restorative justice and legal pluralism is shaped by interdisciplinary empirical research in Asia and the Pacific and in Australia, contributing new theoretical insights that contribute to better public policy.

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Human rights

This cluster comprises a number of projects that examine the regulatory dimensions of international and national human rights standards.

Updated:  10 August 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, RegNet/Page Contact:  Director, RegNet