Accepted paper:

Human Rights Law, Corruption and Development

Author:

Morten Koch Andersen (university of copenhagen)

Paper short abstract:

This paper explores relationships between human rights, corruption and development. I address human rights and corruption, and the practices they describe through human rights cases and human rights work, on the encounter between policing authorities and the policed that links violence and capital.

Paper long abstract:

This paper explores the relationships between human rights, corruption and development. I address human rights and corruption, and the practices they describe through human rights cases and human rights work, on the encounter between policing authorities (state or non-state) and the policed that links forms of violence and capital e.g. bribing police for not violating someone. Two challenges are presented. First, they are inherently difficult to study empirically. They exist in a shadow-land where they incarnate abstract forms of the horrible and the bad. Secondly, corruption and human rights are legal categories grounded in United Nations Conventions. Although, factual legal categories, their abstract and illusory nature render them less effective as analytical categories. They are as much what needs to be studied as they are concepts that help us to understand the social reality they were designed to shape. I suggest a complementary analysis of how practices associated to human rights and corruption are linked empirically, and how they effects issues of social and political development. This involves a move from legal notions to social practices and a focus on the situated contestation of authority in the administration of law and conflict mediation. I propose human rights cases and legal work in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, as a productive methodological empirical lens to understand, address and inhibit practices that supports and sustains corruption, and vice versa, and how it impact development and forms of citizenship and state formation, and equal social orders.

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