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Full-Text Articles in Political Science

The Proof Is In The Process: Self-Reporting Under International Human Rights Treaties, Cosette D. Creamer, Beth A. Simmons Feb 2020

The Proof Is In The Process: Self-Reporting Under International Human Rights Treaties, Cosette D. Creamer, Beth A. Simmons

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Recent research has shown that state reporting to human rights monitoring bodies is associated with improvements in rights practices, calling into question earlier claims that self-reporting is inconsequential. Yet little work has been done to explore the theoretical mechanisms that plausibly account for this association. This Article systematically documents—across treaties, countries, and years—four mechanisms through which reporting can contribute to human rights improvements: elite socialization, learning and capacity building, domestic mobilization, and law development. These mechanisms have implications for the future of human rights treaty monitoring.


Popular Versus Elite Democracies And Human Rights: Inclusion Makes A Difference, Devin K. Joshi, J. S. Maloy, Timothy M. Peterson Mar 2019

Popular Versus Elite Democracies And Human Rights: Inclusion Makes A Difference, Devin K. Joshi, J. S. Maloy, Timothy M. Peterson

Research Collection School of Social Sciences

Scholarly research generally finds that democratic governments are more likely to respect human rights than other types of regimes. Different human rights practices among long-standing and affluent democracies therefore present a puzzle. Drawing from democratic theory and comparative institutional studies, we argue more inclusive or "popular" democracies should enforce human rights better than more exclusive or "elite" democracies, even in the face of security threats from armed conflict. Instead of relying on the Freedom House or Polity indexes to distinguish levels of democracy, we adopt a more focused approach to measuring structures of inclusion, the Institutional Democracy Index (IDI), which ...


Borders Rules, Beth A. Simmons Jan 2019

Borders Rules, Beth A. Simmons

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

International political borders have historically performed one overriding function: the delimitation of a state’s territorial jurisdiction, but today they are sites of intense security scrutiny and law enforcement. Traditionally they were created to secure peace through territorial independence of political units. Today borders face new pressures from heightened human mobility, economic interdependence (legal and illicit), and perceived challenges from a host of nonstate threats. Research has only begun to reveal what some of these changes mean for the governance of interstate borders. The problems surrounding international borders today go well-beyond traditional delineation and delimitation. These problems call for active ...


Sensors Everywhere: Using Satellites And Mobile Phones To Reduce Information Uncertainty In Human Rights Crisis Research, Christoph Koettl May 2017

Sensors Everywhere: Using Satellites And Mobile Phones To Reduce Information Uncertainty In Human Rights Crisis Research, Christoph Koettl

Genocide Studies and Prevention: An International Journal

This article critically reviews the use of ICTs for human rights crisis research. While focusing on two specific technologies—satellite imagery and mobile phone technology—it proposes a general framework for analyzing the added value of ICTs. The author suggests that their added value in mass atrocities research arises from their ability to reduce information uncertainty, a challenge that is exacerbated in the digital age. This is different from delivering “truth”, an inaccurate description that only leads to unfulfilled expectations and hopes. The article is written from a practitioner’s perspective, drawing from the work of a global human rights ...


Legal Status Of Drones Under Loac And International Law, Vivek Sehrawat Apr 2017

Legal Status Of Drones Under Loac And International Law, Vivek Sehrawat

Penn State Journal of Law & International Affairs

No abstract provided.


Uri Professor Launches Online Journal About Sexual Exploitation, Violence, Slavery, Donna M. Hughes Dr. Apr 2017

Uri Professor Launches Online Journal About Sexual Exploitation, Violence, Slavery, Donna M. Hughes Dr.

Donna M. Hughes

Sexual exploitation and violence are rampant throughout the world, and academics are rightly pushing the issue into the public eye through their research and articles. University of Rhode Island professor Donna M. Hughes is at the forefront of the movement with the launch of an online academic journal, “Dignity,” dedicated to publishing papers about sexual exploitation, violence and slavery. The journal is the first academic journal in the world to address global sexual exploitation and well on its way to success.


Qué Tan Lejos Hemos Ido Y Qué Tan Lejos Nos Queda: Los Niños Trabajadores Y La Erradicación Del Trabajo Infantil En Ecuador, Alicia Serna Frausto Jan 2017

Qué Tan Lejos Hemos Ido Y Qué Tan Lejos Nos Queda: Los Niños Trabajadores Y La Erradicación Del Trabajo Infantil En Ecuador, Alicia Serna Frausto

CMC Senior Theses

Al investigar este problema en el caso específico de Ecuador podemos ver algunos patrones que otros investigadores y políticos podrían aplicar en otros contextos de abusos laborales y trabajo infantil. En un mundo más consciente de los derechos humanos, es necesario impedir el trabajo infantil donde se pueda o por lo menos asegurar que los niños que trabajan lo hagan en la forma más sana y segura. En esta investigación se analizan las leyes y regulaciones de las últimas dos décadas, la implementación, y los efectos en las vidas de los niños trabajadores. La implementación de las leyes y regulaciones ...


Administrative Narratives, Human Rights, And Public Ethics: The Detroit Water-Shutoff Case, Richard K. Ghere Oct 2016

Administrative Narratives, Human Rights, And Public Ethics: The Detroit Water-Shutoff Case, Richard K. Ghere

Political Science Faculty Publications

This inquiry focuses specifically on administrative (local official) narratives that speak to contentious issue contexts of social conflict. Specifically, it draws upon a theoretical connection between hermeneutics and the sociology of knowledge to interpret narrative passages of local officials and others related to a contentious public action—the Detroit Water and Sewerage District’s stepped-up water-discontinuation efforts (2014 and 2015) that left thousands of inner-city residents with “delinquent” accounts and no access to water service. Selected narratives from this case are interpreted on the basis of their literary and social functions. The interpretations support a subsequent determination of whether and ...


Trafficking Smuggled Migrants: An Issue Of Vulnerability, Rachel A. Hews Jan 2016

Trafficking Smuggled Migrants: An Issue Of Vulnerability, Rachel A. Hews

Global Tides

This paper analyzes why the UN’s efforts against the sex trafficking of smuggled migrants, specifically regarding the Palermo and Smuggling Protocols, have been inadequate in preventing migrant smuggling. It concludes that the crime-based focus on prosecution overshadows prevention of the crime and protection of the victims, and that a human rights approach addressing the vulnerability of smuggled migrants would be more effective in reducing migrant smuggling long-term. Proposed solutions include decreasing both the “push” and “pull” factors of migration by ratifying existing legislation regarding basic human rights, implementing national policies that increase migrant rights in destination countries, and shifting ...


Examining The Legality Of The Guantánamo Bay Detention Center According To International Humanitarian Law And International Human Rights Law, Sydney T. Winchester Jan 2016

Examining The Legality Of The Guantánamo Bay Detention Center According To International Humanitarian Law And International Human Rights Law, Sydney T. Winchester

Honors Undergraduate Theses

The purpose of this research paper is to examine how international humanitarian law (IHL) and international human rights law (IHRL) are applied to the Guantánamo Bay detention center. This paper was completed through the research of international treaties, court cases, and secondary sources that thoroughly discussed issues pertaining to Guantánamo and international law.

This paper first examines the differences between the two laws by looking at the particular roles each is meant to play in the subject of international law, as well as how the two have been applied thus far to the situation at Guantánamo. Second ...


Incentives To Incarcerate: Corporation Involvement In Prison Labor And The Privatization Of The Prison System, Alythea S. Morrell Dec 2015

Incentives To Incarcerate: Corporation Involvement In Prison Labor And The Privatization Of The Prison System, Alythea S. Morrell

Master's Projects and Capstones

The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the entire world. The United States accounts for approximately 5% of the world’s population, yet it accounts for 25% of the world’s prisoners. Not only does the United States mercilessly incarcerate its own citizens, it disproportionately incarcerates African American and Latino men. This fact on its own is disturbing; however, when it is coupled with the fact that corporations profit from and lobby for an overly aggressive and ineffective criminal justice system, makes these statistics even more horrendous. Private prison companies such as Corrections Corporation of America and GEO ...


Ratification, Reporting, And Rights: Quality Of Participation In The Convention Against Torture, Cossette D. Creamer, Beth A. Simmons Aug 2015

Ratification, Reporting, And Rights: Quality Of Participation In The Convention Against Torture, Cossette D. Creamer, Beth A. Simmons

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

The core international human rights treaty bodies play an important role in monitoring implementation of human rights standards through consideration of states parties’ reports. Yet very little research explores how seriously governments take their reporting obligations. This article examines the reporting record of parties to the Convention against Torture, finding that report submission is heavily conditioned by the practices of neighboring countries and by a government’s human rights commitment and institutional capacity. This article also introduces original data on the quality and responsiveness of reports, finding that more democratic—and particularly newly democratic—governments tend to render higher quality ...


Human Rights Treaties In And Beyond The Senate: The Spirit Of Senator Proxmire, Jean Galbraith Jun 2015

Human Rights Treaties In And Beyond The Senate: The Spirit Of Senator Proxmire, Jean Galbraith

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In 1995, Louis Henkin wrote a famous piece in which he suggested that the process of human rights treaty ratification was haunted by “the ghost of Senator Bricker” – the isolationist Senator who in the 1950s had waged a fierce assault on the treaty power, especially with regard to human rights treaties. Since that time, Senator Bricker’s ghost has proved even more real. Professor Henkin’s concern was with how the United States ratified human rights treaties, and specifically with the packet of reservations, declarations, and understandings (RUDs) attached by the Senate in giving its advice and consent. Today, the ...


Impact Of The “Nirbhaya” Rape Case: Isolated Phenomenon Or Social Change?, Tina P. Lapsia May 2015

Impact Of The “Nirbhaya” Rape Case: Isolated Phenomenon Or Social Change?, Tina P. Lapsia

Honors Scholar Theses

In December 2012, a twenty-three year old college student, who was given the pseudonym “Nirbhaya” (“fearless”), was fatally gang-raped on a private bus in Delhi, India, galvanizing the country to swiftly adopt new legislative measures and catapulting the issue of violence against women in India into the international spotlight. Although assault and rape cases have made India infamous for its high volume of crimes against women, the reaction to this particular incident was much different from before. This paper investigates whether the governmental and societal responses represent social change, as indicated by changing attitudes towards violence against women in India ...


Frames And Consensus Formation In International Relations: The Case Of Trafficking In Persons, Volha Charnysh, Paulette Lloyd, Beth A. Simmons Jan 2015

Frames And Consensus Formation In International Relations: The Case Of Trafficking In Persons, Volha Charnysh, Paulette Lloyd, Beth A. Simmons

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This article examines the process of consensus formation by the international community regarding how to confront the problem of trafficking in persons. We analyze the corpus of United Nations General Assembly Third Committee resolutions to show that: (1) consensus around the issue of how to confront trafficking in persons has increased over time; and (2) the formation of this consensus depends upon how the issue is framed. We test our argument by examining the characteristics of resolutions’ sponsors and discursive framing concepts such as crime, human rights, and the strength of enforcement language. We conclude that the consensus-formation process in ...


Framing For A New Transnational Legal Order: The Case Of Human Trafficking, Paulette Lloyd, Beth A. Simmons Jan 2015

Framing For A New Transnational Legal Order: The Case Of Human Trafficking, Paulette Lloyd, Beth A. Simmons

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

How does transnational legal order emerge, develop and solidify? This chapter focuses on how and why actors come to define an issue as one requiring transnational legal intervention of a specific kind. Specifically, we focus on how and why states have increasingly constructed and acceded to international legal norms relating to human trafficking. Empirically, human trafficking has been on the international and transnational agenda for nearly a century. However, relatively recently – and fairly swiftly in the 2000s – governments have committed themselves to criminalize human trafficking in international as well as regional and domestic law. Our paper tries to explain this ...


Reconciling Liberalism And Judaism? Human Rights In Israel, Raphael Cohen-Almagor Jun 2014

Reconciling Liberalism And Judaism? Human Rights In Israel, Raphael Cohen-Almagor

raphael cohen-almagor

This essay argues that mixing religion in politics is problematic. It becomes destructive when the religion is unyielding and coercive. Whenever religious powers are on the rise, the foundations of liberal democracy are shaken and its protective mechanisms are regressing. Indeed, in Israel egalitarianism is still in the making. Orthodox Judaism and liberal democracy are in conflict. The rise of one comes at the expense of the other in a situation where religion does not encompass the concept of freedom from religion. This essay further argues that Palestinians and Israelis are entitled to the same rights and liberties. Accommodations and ...


Memory, Truth And Justice: A Contextualisation Of The Uses Of Photographs Of The Victims Of State Terrorism In Argentina, 1972-2012: Communicating An Intersection Of Art, Politics And History, Richard Askam Jan 2014

Memory, Truth And Justice: A Contextualisation Of The Uses Of Photographs Of The Victims Of State Terrorism In Argentina, 1972-2012: Communicating An Intersection Of Art, Politics And History, Richard Askam

Theses: Doctorates and Masters

Photographs of the victims of Argentine state terrorism from 1972 to 1983, and most prominently those of the detained-disappeared victims of the Proceso de Reorganización Nacional dictatorship (1976-1983), have had a significant role in elucidating the demands of human rights activists since the aftermath of the Trelew Massacre in 1972. In this thesis I examine the role of photographs of victims of state terrorism in the construction of unofficial, or counter, narratives critical of those produced by two dictatorships and by elected democratic administrations in the demand for truth and justice, and in the construction of social memory. I discuss ...


Reconciling Positivism And Realism: Kelsen And Habermas On Democracy And Human Rights, David Ingram Oct 2013

Reconciling Positivism And Realism: Kelsen And Habermas On Democracy And Human Rights, David Ingram

David Ingram

It is well known that Hans Kelsen and Jürgen Habermas invoke realist arguments drawn from social science in defending an international, democratic human rights regime against Carl Schmitt’s attack on the rule of law. However, despite embracing the realist spirit of Kelsen’s legal positivism, Habermas criticizes Kelsen for neglecting to connect the rule of law with a concept of procedural justice (Part I). I argue, to the contrary (Part II), that Kelsen does connect these terms, albeit in a manner that may be best described as functional, rather than conceptual. Indeed, whereas Habermas tends to emphasize a conceptual ...


Justice Across The Hemispheres: The Effect Of The Pinochet Arrest On Domestic Courts In Chile And Spain, Audrey A. Hansen Apr 2013

Justice Across The Hemispheres: The Effect Of The Pinochet Arrest On Domestic Courts In Chile And Spain, Audrey A. Hansen

Honors Theses and Capstones

This study examines whether the 1998 arrest, by order of a Spanish judge, of former Chilean President Augusto Pinochet in London for crimes of genocide and terrorism impacted the attitude of Chilean and Spanish courts toward prosecuting their own country’s human rights violations. It argues that after 1998 Chile’s judiciary increased prosecutions against former regime officials, while the Spanish judiciary upheld Spain’s 1977 Amnesty Law and declined to participate in the national discourse on the country’s past human rights violations. This research includes a comparative case study of Chile and Spain, their recent histories, their judiciaries ...


Reconciling Positivism And Realism: Kelsen And Habermas On Democracy And Human Rights, David Ingram Jan 2013

Reconciling Positivism And Realism: Kelsen And Habermas On Democracy And Human Rights, David Ingram

Philosophy: Faculty Publications and Other Works

It is well known that Hans Kelsen and Jürgen Habermas invoke realist arguments drawn from social science in defending an international, democratic human rights regime against Carl Schmitt’s attack on the rule of law. However, despite embracing the realist spirit of Kelsen’s legal positivism, Habermas criticizes Kelsen for neglecting to connect the rule of law with a concept of procedural justice (Part I). I argue, to the contrary (Part II), that Kelsen does connect these terms, albeit in a manner that may be best described as functional, rather than conceptual. Indeed, whereas Habermas tends to emphasize a conceptual ...


Legal Mechanization Of Corporate Social Responsibility Through Alien Tort Statute Litigation: A Response To Professor Branson With Some Supplemental Thoughts, Donald J. Kochan Jul 2011

Legal Mechanization Of Corporate Social Responsibility Through Alien Tort Statute Litigation: A Response To Professor Branson With Some Supplemental Thoughts, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

This Response argues that as ATS jurisprudence “matures” or becomes more sophisticated, the legitimate limits of the law regress. The further expansion within the corporate defendant pool – attempting to pin liability on parent, great grandparent corporations and up to the top – raises the stakes and complexity of ATS litigation. The corporate social responsibility discussion raises three principal issues about how a moral corporation lives its life: how a corporation chooses its self-interest versus the interests of others, when and how it should help others if control decisions may harm the shareholder owners, and how far the corporation must affirmatively go ...


Adoption Of The Responsibility To Protect, William W. Burke-White Jul 2011

Adoption Of The Responsibility To Protect, William W. Burke-White

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This book chapter traces the legal and political origins of the Responsibility to Protect doctrine from its early origins in the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty through the 2005 World Summit Outcome Document and up to January 2011. The chapter examines the legal meaning of the Responsibility to Protect, the obligations the Responsibility imposes on states and international institutions, and its implications in for the international legal and political systems. The chapter argues that while the Responsibility to Protect has developed with extraordinary speed, it is still a norm in development rather than a binding legal rule. Its ...


Bureaucracy And The U.S. Response To Mass Atrocity, Gregory Brazeal Jan 2011

Bureaucracy And The U.S. Response To Mass Atrocity, Gregory Brazeal

Gregory Brazeal

The U.S. response to mass atrocity has followed a predictable pattern of disbelief, rationalization, evasion, and retrospective expressions of regret. The pattern is consistent enough that we should be skeptical of chalking up the United States’ failures solely to a shifting array of isolated historical contingencies, from post-Vietnam fatigue in the case of the Khmer Rouge to the Clinton administration’s recoil against humanitarian interventions after Somalia. It is implausible to suggest that the United States would have acted to mitigate or end mass atrocities but for the specific historical contingencies that happen to accompany each outbreak of violence ...


Human Rights Abuses In 1970s Argentina, Vanessa Gomez Jan 2010

Human Rights Abuses In 1970s Argentina, Vanessa Gomez

Calvert Undergraduate Research Awards

In this paper I address various components to the human rights abuses in Argentina in the 1970s. The domestic political situation is analyzed with particular attention paid to the political culture and the history of the regime. Media outlets and interviews by victims are used to facilitate first-hand accounts of the regime. The international arena and the efforts of human rights groups are mentioned as a means to demonstrate the international implications of the regime. I wrote this paper to further my knowledge on human rights abuses and further the knowledge of all who read my attempt. This essay marks ...


“Aspectos Jurídicos Del Delito De Trata De Personas En Colombia: Aportes Desde El Derecho Internacional, Derecho Penal Y Las Organizaciones No Gubernamentales”, Andres Barreto, Beatriz Londoño, Antonio Varon, Andrea Mateus Dec 2009

“Aspectos Jurídicos Del Delito De Trata De Personas En Colombia: Aportes Desde El Derecho Internacional, Derecho Penal Y Las Organizaciones No Gubernamentales”, Andres Barreto, Beatriz Londoño, Antonio Varon, Andrea Mateus

Andres Barreto

La preocupación por el fenómeno de la trata de personas en el escenario internacional ha sido una constante para los Estados desde mediados del siglo XIX. En Colombia la legislación que condena el delito empezó su recorrido desde el Código Penal de 1980, en donde se castigaba con penas de prisión de 2 a 6 años a todo aquel que promoviere la entrada o salida del país de mujer o menor de edad para ejercer la prostitución. Sin embargo, la complejidad de las redes criminales de este crimen transnacional empezó a evidenciar que la trata no solo se cometía sobre ...


The European Court’S Political Power Across Time And Space, Karen Alter Jan 2009

The European Court’S Political Power Across Time And Space, Karen Alter

Faculty Working Papers

This article extracts from Alter's larger body of work insights on how the political and social context shapes the ECJ's political power and influence. Part I considers how the political context facilitated the constitutionalization of the European legal system. Part II considers how the political context helps determine where and when the current ECJ influences European politics. Part III draws lessons from the ECJ's experience, speculating on how the European context in specific allowed the ECJ to become such an exceptional international court. Part IV lays out a research agenda to investigate the larger question of how ...


Human And Fundamental Rights And Duties In Portuguese Constitution. Some Reflections, Paulo Ferreira Da Cunha Dec 2007

Human And Fundamental Rights And Duties In Portuguese Constitution. Some Reflections, Paulo Ferreira Da Cunha

Paulo Ferreira da Cunha

The Portuguese Constitution (1976) came after a period of 48 years of authoritarianism and a closed society, in which some happy few enjoyed great privileges while the great majority of people were charged with heavy duties So, by a very understandable "law of human nature", the constituent law givers could not reasonably impose constitutionally many obligations, in an autonomous way. As rights and duties are the twin sides of the same coin, the juridical formulation under the sign of rights also implies obligations, related to those same rights. This is kinder and more pleasant to do by a liberating Constitution...


No Longer Little Known But Now A Door Ajar: An Overview Of The Evolving And Dangerous Role Of The Alien Tort Statute In Human Rights And International Law Jurisprudence, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2004

No Longer Little Known But Now A Door Ajar: An Overview Of The Evolving And Dangerous Role Of The Alien Tort Statute In Human Rights And International Law Jurisprudence, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

Human rights’ and other international law activists have long worked to add teeth to their tasks. One of the most interesting avenues for such enforcement has been the Alien Tort Statute (“ATS”). The ATS has become the primary vehicle for injecting international norms and human rights into United States courts – against nation-states, state actors, and even private individuals or corporations alleged to actually or in complicity or conspiracy been responsible for supposed violations of international law. This Symposium Article provides an overview of the ATS evolution (or revolution), discusses the most recent significant development in the evolution arising from some ...


The Birth Of The Universal Declaration Of Human Rights, Michael Cooper Sep 1998

The Birth Of The Universal Declaration Of Human Rights, Michael Cooper

Michael D. Cooper, Esq.

This short article, written for an audience of U.S. based social science teachers, reviews the historical circumstances surrounding the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which the United Nations General Assembly adopted on December 10, 1948. The narrative focuses attention on the negotiating process and, in particular, Eleanor Roosevelt’s role as Chair of the U.N. Commission on Human Rights, which drafted the landmark document.