Academic Training on UN Human Rights Mechanisms

The training workshop on the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Mechanisms took place digitally on 1. - 5. November. For the second time, academics from China, Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam participated on Zoom, due to the on-going pandemic. 

Image of the United Nations building in Geneva.

Torbjörn Toby Jörgensen, "United Nations, Nations Unies". Published on under a Creative Commons licence.

A rare practitioner’s insight into the UN Mechanisms 

The annual training workshop on UN human rights mechanisms, co-organised by the NCHR and the Geneva Academy, aims to improve implementation of human rights recommendations, which remains a core challenge in many countries. The workshop offers the opportunity to build a rare, practitioner’s insight into the functioning of UN human rights institutions based in Geneva, through lectures and discussions on the UPR process and UN Treaty Bodies. The ultimate goal is to increase the participants’ capacity in contributing to constructive involvement with human rights discourse through teaching-learning activities, academic research, and other forms of engagement.

Digital training program: ‘Bringing UN Recommendations Home’

Due to the on-going pandemic, the participants were unable to travel to Geneva, where the annual training normally takes place. As in 2021, studios were set up in Oslo and Geneva. 

The workshop was officially opened by Professor Gloria Gaggiola, Director of the Geneva Academy and Professor Åse Gornitzka, Pro-rector at University of Oslo, on Monday 1 November. They both praised the cooperation between NCHR and Geneva Academy, and emphasized the importance of academic involvement in the human rights mechanisms.

Throughout the week, the participants engaged in discussions, group works and lectures, all led by Kamelia Kamileva, senior training coordinator and former UN diplomat. Kamileva had invited in notable speakers such as Ms. Barbara Fontana, Chief of Human Rights Section in the Swiss Mission to the UN, Ms. Mikiko Otani, chair of the Committee og the Rights of the Child (CRC) and Mr. Clement Voule, Special Rapporteur of Freedom of Assembly. Several experts from OHCHR, CCPR Center and Universal Rights Group did also contribute to the dense program.

A highlight of the week were former Special Rapporteur Miloon Kothari’s full day of group exercises on how academia and civil society organisations can engage with the UPR process. 

The participants were awarded a certificate for their active engagement and contribution to the training workshop on Friday 5 November. Knut Asplund, Head of the International Department of NCHR, and Felix Kirchmeier, executive director of Geneva Human Rights Platform at Geneva Academy, held the closing ceremony. 

A Cooperation Between the NCHR and Geneva

This training workshop is a cooperation between the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights (at the University of Oslo, Faculty of Law) and the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights. The 2021 training workshop was the fifth workshop hosted by the NCHR and Geneva Academy since the partnership started in 2017.

By Julie Viker Aanensen
Published Nov. 19, 2021 2:51 PM - Last modified Dec. 3, 2021 11:20 AM