Human Rights Policy Journal

Human Rights Policy Journal sought to be a leading source of insight and critical analysis on important human rights issues facing the world today. The journal provided a platform for students, policymakers, practitioners, activists and the broader community to meaningfully highlight and discuss key human rights concerns.

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Foreign Investment’s Impact on Egypt Before and After the Arab Spring


(Photo Credit: CNN) Prior to the Arab Spring and subsequent government transitions, Egypt was quickly rising through the ranks of developing countries primed for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI). In fact, it received more FDI than most other African and Arab countries.[1] After decades of deliberate work enacting aid-friendly policies and laws, it was perhaps on […]

Social Determinants of Health: How Social Equity Affects Health Care, and What We Can Do About it


Unbeknownst to the average patient, the care we receive from our doctors says relatively little about our overall health. The answer is not found in our genetic makeup, either. The single largest determinant of health, comprising 60% of the puzzle that is a healthy body, is based on social factors. Indeed, our access to stable […]

Human Rights

Venezuelan Human Rights Crisis Spilling into Colombia


The problematic economic and social situation in Venezuela is well known to us by now as the topic makes at least a weekly appearance in international media outlets. Beyond the macroeconomic statistics and the high-level policy talk, these numbers and figures really affect the daily life of not only Venezuelan citizens, but also of some […]

Human Rights

The Day I Learned from Elton John


Early last month, like many other Harvard affiliates, I lined up for tickets to the Harvard Foundation’s Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award ceremony at the Sanders Theater. The nominee of the year was no one else but Sir Elton John. Beyond the willingness to support his charitable work on AIDS/HIV, I would guess many there […]

Human Rights

The Crime of Modern Day Slavery on the High Seas


The Tariff Act of 1930 in the United States precludes the purchase of goods made from forced labor. One would expect that this piece of legislation not only comports with American values, but also incentivizes producers to comply with international norms regarding labor practices. Nothing could be further from the truth. Modern-day slavery persists. The […]

Human Rights

After Landmark Human Rights Ruling, Ireland Reconsiders Its Abortion Ban


Remarkable changes are afoot in Ireland: a government-appointed citizens’ commission seems poised to recommend pivotal reforms that would liberalize the country’s near-total ban on abortion. Ireland is a country where the anti-choice movement has remained fierce and powerful even as the rest of the world moves towards decriminalizing abortion and the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution […]

Sterilizing Sex Workers and Homeless Drug Addicts: A Policy to Help or to Harm?


On January 1, 2017, an Iranian official called for the sterilization of sex workers and homeless drug addicts in Iran’s capital city, Tehran. The official, Siavash Shahrivar, the head of the Social and Cultural Affairs Department in Tehran Governorate, introduced this recommendation as a policy that would prevent social harm. Emphasizing that this should not […]

Human Rights

Why We Need to Stop Talking About “Ethnic” Conflict


The atrocities in Rwanda, we are often told, were an ethnic conflict: a genocide that not only fell along racial lines, but one fueled by intractable differences separating two distinct peoples. Indeed, much coverage from 1994 onward implied a degree of inevitability to the world’s fastest genocide. After all, “ethnic tensions [had] existed in Rwanda […]

How to Obtain and Preserve Marriage Equality


I’ve been thinking a lot about marriage. Not because I’ve found true love, but because more and more countries have considered marriage equality in the second half of 2016. Last month, Gibraltar unanimously passed a bill recognizing marriage equality. Taiwan may become the first in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage as early as next year. […]

Human Rights

Demolition is Not the Answer


The French government’s policy to remove informal settlements of migrants and refugees without providing alternative housing for residents puts vulnerable people into dangerous positions. The French government needs to deliver viable housing alternatives for residents of camps if they want to continue the policy of demolishing settlements they deem illegal. According to the French department […]

Human Rights

Human Rights Violations Remain Worrying in Post-Nuclear Iran


Iran sealed a nuclear deal with the United States and other world powers (P5+1) in July 2015. Many human rights defenders who followed the negotiations believed that a less isolated Iran would have more incentives to respect human rights. Others feared that Iran would now get away with human rights violations more than ever as […]

Human Rights

Engendering Networks of Resistance in Morocco


In 2010-2011, the Arab Spring witnessed a burgeoning female presence in an unprecedented manner. In Morocco, women cyber activists arose at the height of the 2011 protests; their voices continue to reverberate today. Virtual spaces facilitated the growth of these new movements and networks of activism. While much has been written about the general role […]

Human Rights

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