Report to AGM 2011

Report to The AGM – 15 October 2011

Democracy and Human Rights


A new convener for the Democracy and Human Rights was co-opted in April 2011.

In the last 6 months, the Democracy and Human Rights Working Group:

  • Has begun exploring ideas on how to engage with a wider audience
  • Hosted the Commemoration of International Day for Democracy

Prof Jan Aart Scholte of the University of Warwick gave a talk on “Reinventing Global Democracy” during the International Democracy Day at The European Room, Edinburgh City Chambers. The Deputy Lord Provost, Rob Munn, attended the event and gave a welcome address outlining ways in which Edinburgh City support the idea of democracy. The event was video recorded, which will soon be available on the UNAE website. The event coverage articles were written by students. The support for documenting the event came from the collaboration between UNAE and Napier University under the International Development Working Group.

As the Democracy and Human Rights working group is relatively in its early development, in the coming year we look forward to four major tasks:

  1. Increase engagement with student groups and research projects across Edinburgh universities in order to increase membership and build the working group’s knowledge base
  2. Streamline the broad and diverse area of Democracy and Human Rights, particularly focusing on:
    1. Death Penalty (including forms of penalties that lead to death i.e. stoning)
    2. Role of ICT in promoting democracy (including but not limited to: ICT mainstreaming in parliament, social media and civic engagement, new media challenges)
  3. Plan and fundraise for the International Day for Democracy event in 2012
  4. Create self funding events (workshops, seminars) in support of the other tasks

The Democracy and Human Rights group is especially grateful for the support and expertise provided by the other working groups, particularly from Dr Gari Donn, Mr Ken Stewart, Mr Martin Verity and Prof Dabir Tehrani. The WG wishes to thank Ms Julia Presly, Ms Alexandra Wingate, Ms Coral and Ms Aleks for their support in documenting the Democracy Day event.

We look forward to continue working together with other WG within UNAE.

Chair, Democracy & Human Rights

Lishia Erza-Evans

October 2011