Indigenous Peoples' and Minority Rights

Project Summary

This project is hosted by: Human Rights Consortium

Research interests:
Civil Rights, Communities, Classes, Races, Human rights
Africa, Asia, Australasia, Europe, Middle East, North America, South America, United Kingdom
Project period:
01-Oct-2012 - 31-Mar-2015
Project summary:

 The Indigenous Peoples' and Minority Rights Project of the Human Rights Consortium provides a national focal point for leading, facilitating and promoting policy-oriented research into the promotion and protection of the rights of Indigenous peoples and national, ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities. By hosting conferences, workshops, seminars and short courses, and by initiating and facilitating publishing, the project will bring together scholars, practitioners and activists in the area to stimulate discussion and collaboration and enhance relevant policy impact nationally and internationally.

Project members are among the academic friends of the UN Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and have also offered support to the UN Independent Expert on Minority Issues, among other UN agencies.

Management Details

Lead researcher & project contact:

Name Position Institute Organisation Contact
Dr Corinne Lennox Associate Director Human Rights Consortium School of Advanced Study
Dr Damien Short Director Human Rights Consortium School of Advanced Study



Name Position Institute Organisation Contact
Dr Tawhida Ahmed Lecturer School of Law University of Reading
Dr Jennifer Hayes
Professor Colin Samson Professor of Sociology Department of Sociology University of Essex
Dr Maria Sapignoli Visiting Fellow Institute of Commonwealth Studies School of Advanced Study


Related Activities

Related events:

Title Details Date
Current Research Trends in Minority Rights

 This workshop will focus on minority rights and aims to scope existing research and research gaps.

Current Research Trends in Indigenous Rights

 This workshop will focus on indigenous peoples' rights, looking particularly at land and the actions of extractive industries.

Collaborative Partnerships Between Universities and Muslim Institutions

 The University of Derby has been undertaking research on ‘Collaborative partnerships between universities and Muslim institutions: dismantling the roadblocks’. This is an ESRC (Economic and Social Research Council) funded project that builds on previous research about Muslim faith leader training in Britain and opportunities for young British Muslims to undertake an Islamic Studies programme that is validated by Universities, which leads to a recognised and employable qualification and which meets both religious and secular criterion. More details about the research project is available on the project webpage.

As part of this project, the University of Derby is running a series of Knowledge Exchange Seminars across the country and take this opportunity to invite you to apply for a place. These events are designed with two purposes in mind. Firstly, to make YOU aware of research findings about the benefits of collaborative partnerships both for Universities and for British Muslim communities and to also make you aware of existing good practice in this sector. Secondly, we would use the seminar as an opportunity to discuss with you, your experiences and expertise in this area. We are particularly keen to explore any barriers or obstacles that you think exist and possible solutions to these barriers.

The Political Dynamics of Large-Scale land deals in Ethiopia: Experience of the Gambella Regional State

 The global food and financial crises that erupted at the same time in 2007/2008 have triggered a global rush for farmland. In some cases, countries rich in capital but with land and water constraints are renting or buying up large tracts of lands in developing countries as a means of ensuring their long term domestic food security needs. In others, investors – alarmed by the deepening financial crisis – are turning to farmland as an important new source of profit. Hence as a result of these two global crises, vast swathes of farmlands in developing countries – particularly in Africa – are at the moment being sold or leased out to large scale commercial farmers and investors. Ethiopia is one the leading African countries that have leased and are still in the process of leasing out large amount of their arable lands to large-scale farmers and investors – domestic and foreign. So far, most of the discussions on the subject have been narrowly focused on its economic, food security and environmental aspects. The question of land rights and political implications of this phenomenon have been to a great extent overlooked. By drawing upon the experience of the Gambella regional state – the epicenter of large-scale land investments in Ethiopia – this paper aims to shed light on the political dynamics of large-scale land deals in Ethiopia. To this end, I argue that the current trend of large scale land deals in Ethiopia is not only challenging the indigenous peoples’ right to land, territory and natural resources, but it is also threatening the post-1991 social contract – i.e. ethnic federalism – between the envisaged new Ethiopian state and its diverse communities, particularly the peripheral minorities and indigenous ethnic groups.

In conjunction with the Institute of Commonwealth Studies.