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NGOs and the Struggle for Human Rights in Europe

By: Loveday Hodson
Media of NGOs and the Struggle for Human Rights in Europe
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Published: 28-01-2011
Format: Hardback
Edition: 1st
Extent: 222
ISBN: 9781841139616
Imprint: Hart Publishing
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
RRP : £55.00
 

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Loren Epson

About NGOs and the Struggle for Human Rights in Europe

This publication provides a fresh perspective on the litigation of the European Court of Human Rights by focusing upon the role that non-governmental organisations play in it. The inspiration for this work was the growing literature that points to human rights as the outcome of political and social struggles. The role that NGOs play in these struggles is well-documented in the context of other international and regional human rights tribunals, but has been less widely written about in the context of the European Court of Human Rights. The Court is typically subject to legalistic, as opposed to socio-political, scrutiny. In this book the Court's litigation is re-cast as a site where politically motivated actors attempt to impact upon the meaning that is given to the language of the European Convention on Human Rights and to use the Convention as a mechanism that can contribute to social change.

For the purposes of this research a mixture of quantitative and qualitative research techniques are adopted. These methods facilitate the author's desire to obtain both a de-centred perspective on the Court's functions and a systematic picture of the scale of NGO involvement in the Court's litigation. The core of this work is primarily based on data obtained from a sample of cases in which the Court had delivered judgment, and a plethora of associated materials, including extensive interviews with NGOs that were involved in those cases. Ultimately, this book challenges the idea that the litigation of the Court is bound to the idea of achieving individual justice and highlights the meaningful impact that NGOs have on certain important sections of the Court's litigation.

Table Of Contents

1 INTRODUCTION
I. The Struggle for Rights
II. The Struggle for Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights
III. Vocabulary and Classification
IV. Chapter Synopsis
2 THE LIMITS OF INDIVIDUALISM: NGOs AND THE EUROPEAN CONVENTION ON HUMAN RIGHTS
I. Introduction
II. Individualism and the European Convention on Human Rights
III. The Politics of Human Rights Litigation
IV. NGOs and the International Human Rights Movement
V. Beyond Individualism: A Fresh Approach to the European Convention on Human Rights
VI. Conclusion
3 THE ROLE OF NGOs IN ECHR LITIGATION
I. Introduction
II. The Current Literature on NGOs and the ECHR
III. A Brief Outline of the Adopted Methodology
IV. The Incidence of NGO Involvement in the Sample Cases
V. The Type of NGOs Involved in Litigation
VI. The Type of Cases in which NGOs are Involved
VII. The Success-Rate of NGO cases
VIII. Conclusion
4 STATES OF IMPUNITY: THE ROLE OF NGOS IN ADDRESSING GROSS AND SYSTEMATIC VIOLATIONS OF THE CONVENTION
I. Introduction
II. The European Roma Rights Centre: Challenging Police Brutality Against the Roma
III. The Kurdish Human Rights Project: Addressing Gross Human Rights Violations Against Turkish Kurds
IV. Understanding the Involvement of NGOs in the Case Studies
V. Recent Developments
VI. Conclusion
5 'THE FIGHT THAT IS NEVER DONE': THE ROLE OF 'PURE HUMAN RIGHTS' ORGANISATIONS
I. Introduction
II. The AIRE Centre
III. Liberty: Challenging Criminal Justice Reforms
IV. Recent Developments
V. Conclusion
6 'A DESIRE THAT NEVER ENDS': PRESSURE GROUPS AND THE EUROPEAN CONVENTION ON HUMAN RIGHTS
I. Introduction
II. 'PESUE' and the Right to Family Life
III. Stonewall: Lobbying for Gay Rights
IV. Greenpeace and Environmental Rights
V. Recent Developments
VI. Conclusion
7 CONCLUSION
I. Introduction
II. The Research Findings
III. The Limitations of NGOs as Litigators
IV. Concluding Observations
APPENDIX A DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE ADOPTED METHODOLOGY
I. Introduction
II. The Aims and Scope of the Research Project
III. The Sample Analysed
IV. The Quantitative Stage: Identifying NGO Participation
V. The Qualitative Stage: Understanding NGO Participation
VI. Final Observations

Reviews

“This very readable book makes a convincing case that NGOs are a necessary part of the picture of the operation of the ECHR.
...an interesting and valuable contribution to knowledge of the ECHR [and] an engagingly written, well-researched book that is well worth reading.
” –  Ronan McCrea, Common Market Law Review, 48(5)

“... a new and original point of view, strongly backed up scientifically, on the role played by non-governmental organisations in the context of the European Court of Human Rights.” –  Agence Europe's 'European Library' No. 10392/917

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