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  • Human Rights and Sustainable Development: Reflections in the Light of the 2030 Agenda

    Presentation at seminar on The World Bank and Human Rights

    Finn Tarp, Director, UNU-WIDER

    Helsinki, 17 March 2016

  • I. Background and context

  • Overview: 4 pointsI. Pointofdeparture

    UniversalDeclarationofHumanRights

    The2030SustainableDevelopmentAgenda

    II. DataandmonitoringframeworkforAgenda2030? 4datachallenges

    III. TheWorldBankandhumanrights

    IV. Questionsanddilemmas

  • The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) A milestonedocumentinthehistoryofhumanrights

    ProclaimedbytheUnitedNationsGeneralAssemblyinParison10December1948:GeneralAssemblyresolution217A

    Asacommonstandardofachievementsforallpeoplesandallnationsthatsetout,forthefirsttime,fundamentalhumanrightstobeuniversallyprotected

  • The 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda17goals:

    +169targets+229indicators

    +Leavenoonebehind

  • II. Data and the Monitoring Framework for Agenda 2030

  • 1. An enormous amount of missing data especially for the poorest countries

    6

    4

    2

    0

    2

    4

    6

    8

    10

    Goal10,Target1:Growthrateinpercapitarealmeanconsumptionorincome,bottom40%ofpopulation(%)InAfricancountries

    (Source:WDI.Nodataavailablefrom19902008.Nodatain2013or2015.)

    2009[YR2009]

    2010[YR2010]

    2011[YR2011]

    2012[YR2012]

    2014[YR2014]

  • 2. Data by gender are especially poor Whendataiscollectedatindividuallevel,disaggregationbygenderis

    possible.

    However,dataareoftencollectedonlyathouseholdlevel.Insuchcases,genderspecificityisnotalwaysstraightforward.Forexample:

    Assetorlandownership

    Consumption

    Individuallevelpoverty

  • 3. Filling gaps can be (deceptively) difficult for technical reasons

    Someinstanceswheretargetsappearsimplebutmeasurementofindicatorsisdifficult:

    Violentinjuriesanddeathsper100,000population:officialcrimesdatausuallyunderreported

    Percentageofwomenofreproductiveage(1549)withanaemia

    Proportionofpersonswithseverementaldisorderwhoareusingservices

    Percentageofgirlsandboyswhoachieveproficiencyacrossabroadrangeoflearningoutcomes

    Percentageofchildren(3659months)receivingatleastoneyearofqualitypreprimaryeducationprogram

  • 4. Filling gaps can also be difficult for political reasons a point often overlooked

    Example:

    10.2:by2030empowerandpromotethesocial,economicandpoliticalinclusionofallirrespectiveofage,sex,disability,race,ethnicity,origin,religionoreconomicorotherstatus

    Tocollectdataonindigenouspeoples,theyneedtoberecognizedassuch.

    ILO169 IndigenousandTribalPeoplesConvention(1989) isratifiedby22countries:

  • III. The World Bank

  • The World Bank (1) SpeakingabouttheWorldBankandahumanrightsbasedapproach

    todevelopmentisnotstraightforward:theWorldBankhasbeencriticizedfornothavingahumanrightsapproachtodevelopment

    Historically,focusonhumanrights especiallycivilandpoliticalrights hasbeeninterpretedwithintheBankasinconsistentwiththeArticlesofAgreementandthelegalmandateagainstinvolvementincountrypolitics

    ForshortdiscussionseetheReCom Governance&FragilityPositionPaperhttp://www1.wider.unu.edu/fragilityandaid/article/positionpaperaidgovernanceandfragility

  • The World Bank (2) Inthelastdecadeorso,however,theBankhasadoptedabroaderinterpretationofitsmandateto

    includeconsiderationofhumanrightsissues:

    whentheyhaveanimpactdevelopment In2006,BankGeneralCounselAnaPalaciowrote:ItisnowclearthattheBankcanandsometimesshouldtakehuman

    rightsintoconsiderationaspartofitsdecisionmakingprocess(seeTheWayForward:HumanRightsandtheWorldBank,October2006)

    ThisshiftisalsoevidentforinstancewhenweconsiderBankexperienceandpracticeindealingwithdefactogovernmentsfollowingextraconstitutionalregimechanges(underOP/BP7.30)(WIDERResearchfellowRachelGisselquistdidreview)

    Fromabouttheearly2000s,webegintoseetheBankconsideringgovernmentlegitimacy,assignaledforinstancebytheholdingofelections,indecisionstocontinueBankoperations e.g.,Niger1999,CAR2003,Mauritania2005&2008,Honduras2009,etc.

    Followingthe2009coupinHonduras,BankPresidentZoellick notablymadeapublicstatementcondemningthecoup ThismorerecentpracticeisinclearcontrastwithBank(non)responsestomilitarycoupsandhumanrightsrecordsof

    aidrecipientcountriesinearlierdecades

  • IV. Questions and dilemmas

  • First SincetheBankjustifiesattentiontohumanrightsinsofarastheyhaveanimpactondevelopment,itis

    importanttotheBanksapproachthathumanrightsimpactdevelopment.Butistheresearchbasisforthisclear?

    Intermsofcivilandpoliticalrights(CPR),thislinkscloselytodiscussionoftherelationshipbetweengoodgovernanceanddevelopment

    ReCom Governance&Fragility:Gooddemocraticgovernanceisaworthyaiminitself,butresearchisnotclearonitsrelationshiptodevelopment.Thereisalsostrongevidenceforthecausalarrowrunningtheotherway,fromdevelopmenttobettergovernance

    Itmaybethatstatecapacity morethandemocraticgovernance thatisthemostimportantfordevelopment

    Giventhebreathofthe2030Agenda,therearemanyindicatorsforwhichdataarenotavailable(standardsandmethodologies) sowesimplydontknow

    =>Callsforstrategic planningandincreasedresources but

  • Second Whatdoesandshouldthismeanforaidandengagementwithcountrieswithpoorhumanrightsrecords? Countrieswithpoorhumanrightsrecordscanbethosewiththegreatesthumanitarianneeds.Suspendedoperationsmay

    causeunintendedharmtoacountrysinhabitantsandparticularlytohighlyvulnerablepopulations.Ontheotherhand,continuedoperationsmayimpactwelfarebyprovidingmaterialresourcestogovernmentsunwillingtorespondtothedevelopmentalneedsoftheirpopulations.

    TherearesignificantnormativequestionsrelatedtoassessingthewelfareimpactsoftheBankshumanrightsapproach. Aninterestingframingofthisisintermsoftechnocratswhoprioritizematerialprogressversushumanistswhofocus

    onpoliticalrights

    AgovernmentsfailuretomeetESCRrightsinparticulardoesnotnecessarilystemfromalackofpoliticalwillbutmaystemfromextremepovertyandlackofcapacity.Fulfillingallhumanrights particularlysocioeconomicrightssuchasarighttohousing,righttohealth,righttoscienceandcultureetc. issimplynotrealisticformanypoorcountries(andarguablymanyrichonestoo).Weshouldbecarefulnottopunishpoorcountriesforbeingpoor.

    Itisworthdisaggregatingfragilityinthissenseinconsideringresponses. Aidcanalsohelpevenwhentheinstitutionalenvironmentisnotideal

  • Third Canacommitmenttolocalownershipbeatoddswithahumanrights

    approach?

    Weknowthataidgenerallyworksbestwhenitislocallyowned.TheimportanceoflocalownershiptowhatworksisalsoevidentinUNUWIDERresearch

    Butahumanrightsapproachmaymeandonorspushanagendathatisnotnecessarilylocallyowned.Thismaybeagoodthing workrelatedtogenderanddevelopmentoffersmultipleexamples.Isitalwaysgood?

    TheSDGsandconditionality:doweneedtoworry?Conditionalities mightworkwhenpoliticalwillisthemainproblem butotherapproachesmoresensiblewhenpovertyandlackofcapacityarerootcauses

  • www.wider.unu.eduHelsinki, Finland