Contracting Human Rights
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Contracting Human Rights

Crisis, Accountability, and Opportunity

Edited by Alison Brysk and Michael Stohl

By chronicling the continuing contest over the reach, range, and regime of rights, Contracting Human Rights analyzes the way forward in an era of many challenges. This multidisciplinary book contributes to building understanding of the maturation of human rights, from a dissident doctrine to a dynamic parameter of global governance and civil society. Through an examination of both global and local challenges to human rights, including loopholes, backlash, accountability, and new opportunities to move forward, this book analyzes trends across multiple-issue areas.
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Chapter 6: The human rights costs of NGOs’ naming and shaming campaigns

Crisis, Accountability, and Opportunity

Clair Apodaca


International human rights INGOs’ advocacy campaigns of naming and shaming are intended as forms of leverage against recalcitrant governments to encourage their compliance with legal and moral human rights standards. However, these campaigns can have the opposite effect. Criticism of a government’s policy and behavior can also put the INGO staff and the victims at risk of a backlash of retaliatory violence. This chapter reviews moves beyond the commonly debated aspects of INGO accountability by examining the philosophical arguments for and against INGOs accountability for the unintended consequences of the naming and shaming campaigns on nonparticipants.

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