About AHRI

The Association of Human Rights Institutes - AHRI, consists of 47 member institutions that carry out research and education in the field of human rights. The objective of AHRI is to promote research, education and discussion in the field of human rights.


AHRI Co-operation Agreement

The AHRI Co-operation Agreement (pdf) was signed in Reykjavik 22 September 2000. Bjarney Friðriksdóttir, former Director of the Icelandic Human Rights Center, was elected as AHRI's first Chair. The Netherlands Institute of Human Rights accepted to host the Secretariat with Peter Malcontent as Executive Secretary.

The Constitution for the Association of Human Rights Institutes (AHRI) was adopted in April 2011.


The Secretariat is elected for a three-year period. The current secretariat's mandate expires September 2014.

  • Chair, Head of Research Department, Dr. Thomas Gammeltoft-Hansen, The Danish Institute for Human Rights, Copenhagen.
  • Executive Secretary, Senior Researcher, Dr. Eva Maria Lassen, The Danish Institute for Human Rights, Copenhagen.
  • Project manager, Ms Janne Jakobsen, The Danish Institute for Human Rights, Copenhagen

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee is elected for a three-year period. The current Executive Committee's mandate expires September 2014.

  • Inga Bostad (University of Oslo)
  • Margot Salomon, AHRI vice-Chair (London School of Economics)
  • Manfred Nowak (University of Vienna)
  • Thomas Gammeltoft-Hansen, AHRI Chair (Danish Institute for Human Rights)
  • Felipe Gómez Isa (University of Deusto)
  • Roman Wieruszewski (Poznan Human Rights Centre)
  • Vesna Petrovic (Belgrade Centre for Human Rights)
  • Ingrid Westendorp (Maastrich Centre for Human Rights)
  • Antoine Buyse (Netherlands Institute of Human Rights, SIM)
  • Ray Murphy (Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway)
  • Jan Wouters (Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies)
  • Sylvie Langlaude (Human Rights Centre, Queen’s University Belfast)  

Founding history

AHRI was established in 2000 at a founding meeting in Iceland hosted by the Icelandic Human Rights Centre.

All active European academic human rights institutes were invited to join and the following founding members met in Iceland:

  • Norwegian Centre for Human Rights (NCHR), Faculty of Law, University of Oslo
  • Institute for Human Rights at Åbo Akademi University
  • Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law
  • Danish Institute for Human Rights
  • Icelandic Human Rights Center
  • Netherlands Institute of Human Rights (SIM)
  • Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Human Rights

AHRI Membership Application Guidelines

Membership of the Association is "open to human rights institutes and comparable entities on the condition that they have a demonstrably independent and academic status and can subscribe to all provisions of this constitution" (AHRI Constitution Article 9).

The application for membership should contain the following information:

  • Date at which the institute was established
  • Academic status (university/independent research institution/working group)
  • An explanation of the institution's governance structure, the name of the representative to AHRI and the administrative contact
  • Short description of the research on human rights carried out at the institution
  • Motivation for applying for AHRI membership
  • A  statement on how the institute envisions contributing to the development and strengthening of the AHRI network

The annual AHRI membership fee is 150 EUR.

The application should be supported in writing by at least one existing AHRI member.

The application together with the Letter of Support by (an) existing AHRI member(s) should be submitted to the AHRI Secretariat at least two months before the Assembly meeting takes place in the given year.

Applications will be forwarded to the Executive Committee, who will request further information from the applicant if needed.

Admission will be decided upon by the AHRI Assembly on the basis of a two-third majority of Members present. The Assembly meeting takes place once a year, normally in September. The date of the annual Assembly and annual deadline for receipt of applications will be posted on the AHRI website. The membership application deadline for 2014 is July 29th.

Additional information