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Date(s) - 08/11/2017 - 10/11/2017
All Day


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The Social Practice of Human Rights (SPHR): Charting the Frontiers of Research and Advocacy – Nov 8-10, 2017.

Hosted by the Human Rights Center at the University of Dayton, SPHR encourages critical reflection on the state of the evolving global human rights movement and constructive critique of human rights advocacy.

SPHR 2017 explores challenges to advocacy posed by racism, xenophobia, other forms of extremism, and what Pope Francis has termed “the globalization of indifference.” The plenaries focus on the need for new strategies to confront three interconnected human rights challenges that have taken on alarming dimensions: conflict and the challenge of peace, forced migration, and modern-day slavery.

Keynote and featured speakers at the conference will include:

  • Carol Anderson, human and civil rights advocate and professor of African American Studies at Emory University
  • Nadiezhda Henríquez, survivor of Colombian paramilitary violence and human rights advocate

Roxana Altholz, associate director of UC Berkeley International Human Rights Law Clinic
Fateh Azzam, senior fellow at Harvard University Carr Center for Human Rights Policy
Pamela Aall, senior advisor for conflict prevention and management at the U.S. Institute of Peace
Jane Bloom, head of the U.S. liaison office at the International Catholic Migration Commission
Azadeh Shahshahani, legal and advocacy director at Project South, Atlanta, GA
Natasha Bannan, president of National Lawyers Guild and associate counsel at LatinoJustice
Dylan Corbett, executive director of the Hope Border Institute, El Paso, TX
Friar Tomás González Castillo, director of La 72 Home and Refuge, Tabasco, Mexico
David Schilling, senior program director at the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, NY
Myriam Zapata, professor at the University de La Salle, Bogota, Colombia

We invite proposals from scholars, practitioners, policymakers, and advocates on a broad array of human rights topics. The Center welcomes both theoretical and applied research proposals that capture important trends in human rights scholarship and research. We encourage the submission of individual papers, complete panels, roundtables, workshops and practitioner presentations, as well as interdisciplinary and scholar-practitioner collaborations.

While there are no restrictions on the subject matter of proposals, the Center is especially interested in papers and panels that address:

• Conflict and mass displacement
• Nonviolent advocacy strategies
• Poverty, inequality and exploitation
• Human trafficking and forced labor
• Corporate social responsibility and accountability
• The U.N. Sustainable Development Goals
• Faith-based views on human rights, such as liberation theology
• Catholic social teaching and human rights


Please submit a proposal via the conference website, go.udayton.edu/hrc.

Proposals/paper submissions must contain:

• A title
• An abstract of 300 or fewer words
• Three to five keywords
• A short biographical statement (no more than 200 words) for each author, including name, title and institution/organization affiliation.

Deadline for submissions: March 31, 2017

Notification of acceptance: May 1, 2017

  • Conveners plan to publish a selection of conference proceedings in an edited volume or special journal issue.
  • Limited travel support is available for graduate students, junior scholars, contingent faculty, practitioners and presenters from the Global South.


More than 100 scholars presented research on a broad array subjects at the SPHR conferences in 2013 and 2015. Select papers were published in an edited volume, The Social Practice of Human Rights (Palgrave Macmillan, Joel R. Pruce, Ed.), and a special edition of Public Integrity (forthcoming).

SPHR’s plenary sessions feature advocacy-oriented dialogues among academic experts and practitioners focus­ing on critical issues on the human rights agenda. The inaugural SPHR conference in 2013 focused on the state of the human rights movement, the changing nature of human rights advocacy, and the renewed importance of academic research. The second, in 2015 — convened just days after the United Nations adopted the global sustainable development agenda — highlighted the importance of integral approaches to advocacy to achieve the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals.

SPHR’s concurrent panel sessions feature the original research of leading and emerging human rights scholars from across the disciplinary spectrum.

Please do not hesitate to contact me directly: Youssef Farhat at farhaty1@udayton.edu or hrc@udayton.edu

For more information or to submit a proposal: go.udayton.edu/hrc