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Human Rights Lab

The Minnesota Model

Building Interdisciplinary Capacity to Defend Human Rights in Challenging Times

The Minnesota Model is an interdisciplinary initiative to support a series of diverse faculty-student-practitioner partnerships that identify critical challenges to human rights and propose innovative, timely solutions. Supported by the University’s Grand Challenges Research Grant, the Model will draw on faculty expertise from across the University, and work in partnership with human rights defenders around the world to address a spectrum of violations, such as incursions on human security, deprivation of basic needs and the denial of justices.

Administered jointly by the Human Rights Center in the Law School and the Human Rights Program in CLA, the Minnesota Model will support 14 different projects that bring together faculty and graduate student researchers with human rights partners in the field, including non-governmental and intergovernmental organizations working to advance human rights. The Minnesota Model is composed of three types of research projects:

  • Six strategic research partnerships between academic researchers and practitioner organizations, producing impactful scholarly and policy outcomes.
  • Six new faculty-led projects, a venue for interdisciplinary human rights research and discussions, which will serve as the core for the Model. These six specific projects will give priority to faculty and graduate students from units not previously involved in the human rights collaboration.
  • Two NGO-led projects that reframe research engagement by inviting partner organizations to initiate projects.

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