The Inter-American Human Rights Network

The Inter-American Human Rights Network (IAHRN) was an international and interdisciplinary  group of scholars committed to understanding the evolution and impact of the Inter-American Human Rights System.  This Network was supported by the Leverhulme National Trust and hosted a number of international workshops and conferences and produced both academic publications as well as policy briefs.  

Research Outputs

The Inter-American Human Rights System: The Law and Politics of Institutional Change (Courtney Hillebrecht and Par Engstrom, eds.)

Abstract: At the time of the adoption of the American Declaration on the Rights and Duties of Man in 1948, there was little indication that the Declaration would ultimately yield a highly institutionalized system comprised of a quasi-judicial Inter-American Commission and an authoritative Inter-American Court of Human Rights. Today, however, the Inter-American Human Rights System (IAHRS) has emerged as a central actor in the global human rights regime.

This comprehensive volume explores the institutional changes and transformations that the IAHRS has undergone since its creation, offering contributions and insights from a variety of disciplines including history, law, and political science. The book shows how institutional change has affected and been affected by the System’s normative leanings, rules of procedure and institutional design, as well as by the position of the IAHRS within the broader landscape of the Americas. The authors examine institutional change from a variety of angles, including the process of change in historical context, normative and legal developments, and the dynamic relationship between the IAHRS and other regional and international human rights institutions.

This book was originally published as a special issue of The International Journal of Human Rights.

See: Par Engstrom and Courtney Hillebrecht.  2018. “Institutional Change and the Inter-American Human Rights System: Introduction to a Special Issue of the International Journal of Human Rights.” The International Journal of Human Rights 22 (9): 1111-1112.

The Inter-American Human Rights System: Impact Beyond Compliance (Par Engstrom, ed.)

Abstract: This volume brings together innovative work from emerging and leading scholars in international law and political science to critically examine the impact of the Inter-American Human Rights System (IAHRS). By leveraging a variety of theoretical frameworks and methodological approaches, the contributors assess the impact of the IAHRS on domestic human rights change in Latin America. More specifically, the book provides a nuanced analysis of the System’s impact by examining the ways in which the IAHRS influences domestic actors and political institutions advancing the realisation of human rights. This work will be of interest to students and scholars of human rights and Latin American politics, as well as to those engaged with the nexus of international law and domestic politics and the dynamics of international and regional institutions.

Chapter: Courtney Hillebrecht, “The Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the Effects of Overlapping Institutions: A Preliminary Study” in The Inter-American Human Rights System: Impact Beyond Compliance, Par Engstrom, ed. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019.