Promoting human rights under fire: INGOs’ mitigating effect on human rights violations during armed conflict

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Can international nongovernmental organizations (INGO) mitigate human rights violations when armed conflict ensues? There is a reason to believe that the harsh conditions of war, which destabilize society and incite nationalist and militarist notions, would prevent the work of INGO from being effective. However, world polity scholarship suggests that regardless of these conditions INGOs can improve human rights standards. INGOs are one of the principal and most effective vehicles for the diffusion of international human rights norms. In this paper, we highlight the part INGOs play in monitoring human rights violations and its potential effect on states’ human rights violations during war. Examining a global sample of countries that experienced war on their soil between 1977 and 2003, this paper studies the association between INGOs count per country per year with four human rights indexes. Results show an association between the presence of INGOs and improvement of human rights conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalSocial Science Research
StatePublished - Sep 2018


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