Advisory Board

The Advisory Board is in charge of providing the Executive Committee and the staff with advice, expertise and strategies on the activities of the organisation in order to better fulfil its goal: to promote and strengthen the Universal Periodic Review. The current members are:

  • Rita Itzsák (Hungary) - Special Rapporteur on minority issues
Ms. Rita Izsák (Hungary) was appointed as Independent Expert on minority issues by the Human Rights Council and assumed her functions on 1st August 2011. Her mandate was subsequently renewed in 2014 as Special Rapporteur on minority issues. She holds a Masters in Law diploma from the Péter Pázmány Catholic University, Budapest, Hungary. She started her career in the Budapest-based European Roma Rights Center and later became a Consultant with the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Open Society Institute, the Roma Education Fund, and the Association for Women's Rights in Development. She worked in Somaliland/Somalia with the Somaliland National Youth Organization (seconded by the London-based Progressio) and gave human rights lectures in Hargeisa Law University. Later she moved to Srebrenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina, to join the Organisation of Security and Co-operation in Europe as a Human Rights Officer. During 2011-2012, Ms Izsák was the President and CEO of the Tom Lantos Institute based in Budapest, Hungary, a research institute and think-tank with a particular focus on human rights and minority rights.

  • Marc Limon (United Kingdom) - Universal Rights Group

Marc Limon is the Director of the Universal Rights Group (URG), an independent think-tank dedicated to international human rights policy. The URG’s goal is to generate progress towards the full realization of the rights and freedoms contained in the universal human rights instruments through solutions-based policy research and forward-looking policy prescription, and through offering a respected platform for information-sharing and dialogue.

Prior to the establishment of the URG, Marc served for six years as a diplomat of the Permanent Mission of Maldives at the United Nations Human Rights Council. Marc also worked for seven years for the Government of the Republic of Maldives to help implement the country’s democratic and human rights reform agenda. Earlier, Marc worked as a government relations consultant in Brussels where he advised a range of government and corporate clients on EU policy and public relations.

Marc holds two Masters Degrees from the Free University of Brussels and the Catholic University of Leuven (both in Belgium), and a Bachelor Degree from Keele University (UK). He is married with two children.

  • Phil Lynch (Australia) - International Service for Human Rights

Phil Lynch is Director of the International Service for Human Rights ( in Geneva. ISHR works to support human rights defenders and strengthen human rights systems at the international and regional levels. Prior to joining ISHR, Phil held positions as Director of the Human Rights Law Centre and Homeless Law in Australia. Follow him on Twitter at @PhilALynch.

  • Professor Edward R. McMahon (United States) - University of Vermont

Edward McMahon currently holds a joint appointment as Research Associate Professor in the Departments of Community Development and Applied Economics, and Political Science, at the University of Vermont. He has collaborated with UPR Info since 2009, and has taken the lead in developing the action category component of UPR Info’s innovative database. He has made a number of presentations in the regard to a variety of audiences in Europe and the United States, and has a related article in the forthcoming edition of the African Yearbook of International law.

McMahon previously was Dean’s Professor of Applied Politics and Director of the Center on Democratic Performance at Binghamton University. He also held the position of Africa Regional Director for the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs from 1989-1998 and previously served for 10 years as a U.S. diplomat.