Trade and Human Rights: What Does 'Impact Assessment' Have to Offer?

Human Rights Law Review, Vol. 8, No. 4, pp. 587-615, 2008

Warwick School of Law Research

43 Pages Posted: 24 Oct 2009 Last revised: 15 Nov 2009

See all articles by Alessa Goller

Alessa Goller

affiliation not provided to SSRN

James Harrison

University of Warwick - School of Law

Date Written: October 23, 2008

Abstract

This paper examines key issues associated with conducting human rights impact assessments of international trade agreements. It records the widespread calls for such human rights impact assessments (HRIAs) by relevant actors, but the limited attempts that have so far been made to explore important issues concerning their design and intrinsic value. It therefore poses some key questions which need to be considered in the development of appropriate methodologies and explores the extent to which these methodological issues can be appropriately resolved. In so doing, the piece considers lessons from existing practice in the field including 'social' impact assessments of trade agreements and the limited number of HRIAs so far conducted which are specifically focused on international trade law issues. As a result of this analysis some conclusions are drawn about the value and limitations of human rights impact assessments of trade agreements, and the extent to which we can expect them to enhance the debate about human rights law and trade law inter-linkages in the future.

Keywords: human rights impact assessment, HRIA, international trade, human rights, social impact assessment, SIA, WTO

Suggested Citation

Goller, Alessa and Harrison, James, Trade and Human Rights: What Does 'Impact Assessment' Have to Offer? (October 23, 2008). Human Rights Law Review, Vol. 8, No. 4, pp. 587-615, 2008; Warwick School of Law Research. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1493295

Alessa Goller

affiliation not provided to SSRN

James Harrison (Contact Author)

University of Warwick - School of Law ( email )

Gibbet Hill Road
Coventry CV4 7AL, CV4 7AL
United Kingdom
02476 523170 (Phone)
02476 524105 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/law/staff/academic/harrison

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