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Developing Effective Strategies for Local Human Rights Organizations in Mexico City

March 3, 2017

Andrea Martínez is a candidate for a Master of Human Rights, jointly offered through the Humphrey School of Public Affairs and the College of Liberal Arts. Martínez is also a research assistant in the Human Rights Organizations Project (HROP) team, led by Professor James Ron. After the recent completion of the first year of a two-year project in cooperation with Mexican academic institutions FLACSO and CIDE, Martínez and José Kaire, a PhD candidate in the political science department, participated in a conference where HROP’s findings were presented.

This conference, which included a workshop, was held on February 2, 2017, and included more than 20 local human rights organizations (LHRO). The goal of the conference was to present the findings and comprehensive research done by HROP regarding the potential for local funding of Mexican LHROs. The presented research included a survey of leaders from 34 Mexican LHROs as well as a representative survey of 960 adults from the general public in Mexico City. The survey contained questions regarding the respondents perceptions of human rights and their willingness to donate to human rights organizations. HROP’s team had also conducted two survey experiments to learn more about the public’s giving behavior. Professor James Ron and his team presented the results and findings of the representative survey at the conference.

During the conference, Martínez listened to LHROs’ thoughts and opinions about the findings and learned more about their interests. She was also able to get to know attendees throughout the morning; forming relationships that will prove to be very important given her future work with the organizations.

As a part of the two-year project, Martínez and Kaire will travel to Mexico City during the summer of 2017 to work with these organizations and apply the findings from the research. This trip will help the LHROs analyze the survey data and use it for developing effective funding strategies, advocacy campaigns, and other programs to benefit the organizations. The final goal of the project is for these organizations to effectively use data to support their current strategies and, hopefully, gain more local financial support by reaching out to and connecting with Mexico City residents. This unique project shows the potential for effective advocacy strategies through the cooperation between academia and non-governmental organizations.

Martínez has a BA in political science and international relations from CIDE in Mexico. She won first place in the International Contest on Public Security, Victimization, and Justice in Latin America. She also worked for the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs for three years, where she focused on projects aimed at improving the condition of vulnerable Mexican migrants abroad.