International Human Rights Education Conferences

The International Human Rights Education (IHRE) Conferences, which were initiated in 2010 by Professor Sev Ozdowski to advance human rights culture world-wide, have been held in Australia, South Africa, Poland, Taiwan, USA, Holland and Canada.


Past Events:

9th International Conference on Human Rights Education (2018)

Unleashing the Full Potential of Civil Society

Sydney, 26-29 November 2018

9ICHRE Day 4 delegates

The conference theme Unleashing the Full Potential of Civil Society proved to be well chosen and popular with human rights scholars and advocates as some 250 paper proposals were received.  Only approximately 90 of the best paper and workshop proposals were chosen for presentation at the conference.  The full conference program can be viewed by clicking here (Opens in a new window)

The 9th ICHRE was an absolute success with the attendance of over 380 delegates and speakers from around 50 countries. Feedback from those who participated has been very positive, the high quality of presentations as well as the depth of experience of speakers who were noted by all to have contributed to the high standard of the conference. The participation of some 110 high school students in the closing discussion panel was also a most welcomed innovation. Our hope is that the conference has made a positive contribution to human rights education worldwide.

The 9th ICHRE Report has been prepared and the full report can be viewed by clicking here (Opens in a New Window)

Listen to the voices of youth – delivering on the expectations of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights? (Opens in a new window) -  Elisa Gazzotti, Co-Chair of the NGO Working Group on Human Rights Education and Learning, and UN Representative for Soka Gakkai International


8th IHRE Conference (2017)

Equitas logo

The 8th International Conference on Human Rights Education (Opens in a new window), Bridging our Diversities, was held in Montreal, Canada, from November 30th to December 3rd, 2017. Concordia University provided the venue and graciously hosted the event. The 2017 Conference was co-organized by Dr Sev Ozdowski of Western Sydney University and Australian Council for Human Rights Education. This year’s Conference was the 8th in a series of annual conferences previously held in Australia, South Africa, Poland, Taiwan, USA, Netherlands and Chile.

More than 310 registered participants coming from over 50 countries in all regions of the world took part in this event.  The main objective of the Conference was to work together to develop a dynamic articulation of the value of human rights education as well as to document a collection of innovative and effective strategies and practices to respond to current global challenges.

The conference spread over the 3.5 days and consisted of three major themes:

  • Human rights education as a fundamental response to global challenges, for reconciliation with indigenous peoples and in achieving gender equality
  • HRE good practices for building equitable and inclusive communities
  • HRE tools and tactics to ensure impact

All workshops and panel presentations followed a participatory approach which involved active engagement of participants.

Recordings from the panels can be viewed by clicking here.

More information and a full list of all plenary, workshop and panel sessions, including main speakers and organizations responsible for organizing workshops and panels, is provided in the Narrative Report(Opens in a new window), Conference Program(Opens in a new window), Conference Declaration(Opens in a new window) and Dr Ozdowski’s Conference Closing Remarks (Opens in a new window).


7th IHRE Conference

It was rewarding to receive the Publication of Key Papers (Opens in a new window) presented during the 2016 International Conference on Human Rights Education (Opens in a new window) that was held on December 12-15, 2016, at the Faculty of Law of the University of Chile (Universidad de Chile).

The 2016 IHREC was the first of these Conferences to be held in Latin America. It was organized by the Faculty of Law’s  Center for Human Rights and its Office of Outreach, in cooperation with Western Sydney University. The Organizing Committee of the VII IHREC included representatives from both the University of Chile and Western Sydney University. From the University of Chile: Lea Newfarmer, Myrna Villegas, Alex Choquemamani, Paulina Pulido, Natalia Reyes, Lorena Pino, Camila Araneda, Claudia C├írdenas, Javier Godoy, Nicolas Bosbach, and Sebasti├ín Candia. From Western Sydney University: Sev Ozdowski.

The Conference, which was bilingual, brought together academics, students, activists, government officials, members of NGOs, and experts to discuss the most pressing issues regarding human rights education (HRE). Over four days, the IHREC participants took part in thematic panels and poster presentations that dealt with eight issues: 1. Human rights education (HRE) in formal education systems. 2. HRE in professional training. 3. HRE for the general public. 4. Judiciary and HRE. 5. Transitional justice and HRE. 6. Multiculturalism and HRE. 7. Gender and HRE. 8. Social rights and HRE. This publication compiles a majority of the presentations given during the thematic panels, in the language in which they were presented and organized into thematic chapters that reflect the eight issues detailed above. Throughout the discussions, conference participants presented case studies and theoretical frameworks that should guide the promotion of best practices in human rights education. They identified major political, economic and cultural obstacles that hinder the full exercise of human rights and the ways that HRE can help confront those obstacles.

To view the publication, please download here (Opens in a new window), or view at the publication website (Opens in a new window)


6th IHRE Conference

The Sixth IHRE Conference (opens in a new window) 'Translating Roosevelt's Four Freedoms to Today's World' was hosted by the University College Roosevelt (Utrecht University) in Middelburg, the Netherlands, from 16-18 December 2015.


The 5th IHRE Conference

The Fifth IHRE Conference (Opens in a new window) 'Advancing UNiversal Human Rights Culture' was hosted by the American University Washington College of Law, Washington DC, USA, from 4-6 December 2014.


The 4th IHRE Conference

The Fourth IHRE Conference (opens in a new window) 'Global Convergence and Local Practice' was hosted by Soochow University, Taipei Taiwan from 21-26 November 2013.


The 3rd IHRE Conference

The Third IHRE Conference (opens in a new window) 'Influencing Change in Times of Transition and Crisis' was hosted by the Jagiellonian University in Cracow Poland from 7-10 December 2012.
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The 2nd IHRE Conference

The Second IHRE Conference (opens in a new window) 'Celebrating Diversity and Achieving Social Justice' was hosted by the University Kwazulu-Natal in Durban South Africa from 14-16 November 2011.


The 1st IHRE Conference

The First IHRE Conference (opens in a new window) 'Educating for Human Rights, Peace and Intercultural Dialogue' was hosted by Western Sydney University at Parramatta Campus 4-6 November 2010.

The conference was organised in response to the UN World Programme for Human Rights Education to promote human rights education, particularly in the Australian and Asia Pacific region.