COST Action: The Role of the EU in the UN Human Rights Reform

About the Project

The new COST Action “The Role of the EU in the UN Human Rights Reform” builds upon the cooperation of the Association of Human Rights Institutes (AHRI network) in the framework of the former COST Action “Human Rights, Peace and Security in EU Foreign Policy”. The new project started at the end of 2008, the official start-up meeting of the Management Committee took place in Utrecht, Netherlands in February 2009.

The main objective of the Action is to increase and consolidate knowledge of the ongoing process of institutional, structural, and procedural reforms of the United Nations human rights system, so as to recommend standpoints for the European Union in this process working towards strengthening the protection of human rights world-wide.

The United Nations is involved in the promotion of human rights in a number of areas, particularly through the Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights and the newly established Human Rights Council. The European Union has great interest in the outcome of the reforms underway in both these central institutions. These include the building up of a totally new institution of universal periodic review and the ambitious reform of the human rights treaty bodies system. However, the new political power balance in the Council and the existing dangers to a fundamental reform of the treaty body system pose far-reaching challenges to the role of and contribution by the EU. This Action deals with a concrete and topical issue of great importance for EU internal and external policy in an important area. It is moreover an Action with an innovative central component: strengthen the treaty body system with the establishment of a world court of human rights.

For research on the position and possibilities of the EU in human rights reform three working groups have been established., that are being monitored by a Management Committee (MC), consisting of representatives of each of the participating institutes.

More information on the COST Policy Meeting on the role of the EU in the U.N. Human Rights Reform from September 2012 can be found here.

Project Data

Country: Europa
Persons involved: Management Committee Chair: Manfred Nowak
LBI-GMR COST participants: Julia Kozma, Karin Lukas, Roland Schmidt
Administration: Helga Baumschabl
Contact persons: Karin Lukas
Lead Organisation: COST Office, Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Fundamental and Human Rights (LBI-GMR), Research Platform “Human Rights in the European Con-text”
Partner Organisations: Association of Human Rights Institutes
Project start: 02/2009
Project end: 02/2013
Project completed: Yes
Funded by: European Commission – Research Framework Programme European Science Foundation
Programmlinie LBI-GMR: Human Dignity and Public Security