Activities

Established in 2008, UPR Info aims at promoting human rights through the Universal Periodic Review (UPR). By enhancing the ability of different key stakeholders to access the information about this mechanism by building capacities, providing updates on the best practices and developments as well as updating our analytical database, UPR Info contributes to promote the respect of human rights. Through its Programmes UPR Info foster a conducive environment for civil society and States to advance the realisation of human rights and progress on inclusive development that leaves no one behind through the UPR. It is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation based in Geneva, Switzerland.

UPR Info is in Special Consultative Status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

Statutes
Download the Statutes (available in French) of the organisation.

Working methods
UPR Info follows a gender equality and human rights-based approach to realizing our mission.

Through our training programs, we strive to bring a differentiated response to issues affecting women/girls, vulnerable and marginalized groups.

Gender Inclusive Approach
UPR Info promotes women’s and girls' rights and gender equality in all its activities. UPR Info also strives to ensure equal gender balance between participants in all activities. In this context UPR Info champions the view that in order to carry any meaning, national ownership can only be achieved if men and women are actively involved in all stages of project design, implementation, and evaluation. However, UPR Info’s project activities are typically implemented in societies characterised by patriarchal systems making gender parity a challenge. It follows that our counterparts in CSOs and state institutions are more often men than women. To remedy this, we partner with women’s organisations in the project design to ensure that the content of each activity cater for their needs and concerns. In the implementation phase, we make sure that women-lead organisations and HRDs/CSOs working on women's rights are present and participate in an active and meaningful manner at the various steps of the project. UPR Info is continuously discussing with women participants on how to ensure a safe and enabling space for their full participation. Furthermore, UPR Info mainstreams a gender equality approach as key programming principle. It does so by introducing in its training workshops a session on gender analysis and gender in analytical frameworks. 

Human Rights Based Approach
In line with the 2030 Agenda core engagement to leave no one behind, UPR info is applying a human rights-based approach (HRBA) to programming. UPR Info believes that long-standing results can only be achieved by fostering the participation of the right holders in decision-making that concerns them and that it’s important to ensure that vulnerable and marginalised groups are not discriminated against and participate in decisions affecting their life. UPR Info will further mainstream a HRBA to programming through its monitoring and evaluation work. To do this, the human rights-based thinking will be built in all programme levels.

Sustainable Development Goals
UPR Info believes in the mutually reinforcing potential between development goals and human rights. The UPR offers the best platform to mainstream this integrated approach into all national human rights dialogues, commitments, and plans. Existing reporting and accountability mechanisms in the human rights system can be used to inform and guide SDG implementation. Likewise, the SDGs can enhance the impact of the human rights system. UPR Info mainly supports the UN sustainable development goals 16 regarding peace, justice and institutions and goal 5 regarding gender equality. SDG 16 encompasses several fundamental freedoms and civil and political rights. Not surprisingly, this is the Goal with the strongest links to the UPR: more than one third of all linked recommendations are connected to the Goal of achieving Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions. UPR Info will also support SDG 5. UPR Info encourages in the training sessions to use a gender-based approach for the analysis of all the issues and formulation of recommendations to address human rights violations that address women. In accordance with the Resolution 6/30, according to which a gender perspective should be included at all stages of the review, UPR Info will adopt this approach during the delivery of its activities. UPR Info runs three programmes:

  1. Policy and Advocacy Program
  2. In-Country Programme
  3. Stakeholders Programme
Please read our Annual Reports to know more about these programmes: You will find below a brief description of our three programmes:

Policy and Advocacy Program

Formerly the Pre-sessions Program, the Policy and Advocacy Program was established in 2019 to further promote the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) as a mechanism for the promotion and protection of human rights. At the policy level, the Program supports the strengthening of the UPR through engagement in constructive dialogue, participating in discussions at the Human Rights Council (HRC) and across United Nations (UN) mechanisms. The Program will continue to provide an international advocacy platform to civil society and national human rights institutions (NHRIs) through the Pre-sessions, while also providing these actors with tools to engage in the process throughout the cycle.Read more about our pre-sessions here.

In-Country Programme

Leaning on UPR Info’s past experiences, this Program seeks to building the capacities of national stakeholders to promote human rights, democracy and the rule of law on the ground. Built on the backbone of the last phase of the In-country Program, this Program aims at equipping Government, Parliamentarians, National Human Rights Institutions, civil society organisations, youth groups, women, vulnerable groups with knowledge and tools to effectively engage in the process. UPR Info will ensure the sustainability of its actions by coordinating and collaborating with local organisations, UN, and development agencies as well as embassies based in the countries where it will be operating. In order to create and enhance a conducive environment for engagement, the UPR will be used as the main vehicle. Through its five-step scheme, UPR Info will integrate systematically the sustainable development goals, gender equality and, the empowerment of women and girls. To learn more about the In-Country Programme, click here. 

For four years (2011-2014), UPR Info published 165 country assessments on the implementation of UPR recommendations at mid-term, that is, in between two UPRs. Through the evaluation of more than 11,500 recommendations, two publications, Beyond Promises (October 2014) and On the road to implementation (October 2012), detailed the challenges faced by UPR stakeholders in implementing human rights obligations. The four-year Programme shed light on the success of the UPR: in the first cycle, 48% of recommendations triggered action by the government by mid-term.

Stakeholders Programme

Over the last 10 years a significant component of UPR Info’s work consisted in engaging mainly with CSOs and States. When working for the promotion and advancement of human rights, the call for action cannot exclusively lie on the door of these two actors. At the outset of the third cycle, the international community called for focusing on implementing the recommendations in line with the fundamental objective of improving the human rights situation on the ground. As all States are called to implement their accepted recommendations in compliance with international human rights law and, when relevant, international humanitarian law, the implementation should always take place in consultation and partnership with civil society and NHRIs and the people concerned and be informed by the evolution of the national context and human rights situation. 

The Stakeholders Programme aims at supporting  key UPR stakeholders to promote an effective implementation of human rights recommendations by developing and tailoring tools and organizing capacity building activities and at enhancing strategic communications and partnerships to engage more people in the promotion and protection of human rights through the UPR. UPR info will facilitate the access to information to all the key UPR stakeholders through the website and the database of recommendations. 

During the strategy period, our interventions will focus on the following actors: States, Parliaments, NHRIs and civil society, including youth.

The mandate of UPR Info is to ensure that the UPR is an effective human rights mechanism to bring about change on the ground. As a consequence, we closely monitor reviews and follow the modalities in Geneva to ensure that the mechanism is a robust one. In that perspective, we regularly take the floor at the Human Rights Council to draw the attention of the international community to the evolution of practices and worrying patterns. UPR Info was particularly active during the revision of the work and modalities of the Human Rights Council in 2010-2011.