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The Transformation of Human Rights Fact-Finding$
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Philip Alston and Sarah Knuckey

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190239480

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190239480.001.0001

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Democratizing Human Rights Fact-Finding

Democratizing Human Rights Fact-Finding

Chapter:
(p.399) 19. Democratizing Human Rights Fact-Finding
Source:
The Transformation of Human Rights Fact-Finding
Author(s):

Molly K. Land

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190239480.003.0019

Using the example of a participatory mapping project in Nairobi, Kenya called Map Kibera, this chapter argues that participatory fact-finding will differ qualitatively from traditional fact-finding in two ways. First, this new fact-finding will be more effective in documenting violations of the positive obligation to fulfill rights than are traditional fact-finding methods. Second, this chapter also argues that participatory fact-finding, enabled by the use of new technologies, facilitates bottom-up claiming of rights and thereby transforms human rights investigation into a tool for mobilization and constituency building. Democratized fact-finding may not always lend itself well to shaming states about their human rights records, but it will be better suited than current approaches for fostering local grass-roots mobilization and providing a basis for community organization.

Keywords:   participatory fact-finding, mapping, grass-roots mobilization, democratization, Kenya

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