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Human Rights Pulse - The Passion Factor (Pursuing a Career in Human Rights) Cover
Human Rights Pulse - The Passion Factor (Pursuing a Career in Human Rights) Profile

Human Rights Pulse - The Passion Factor (Pursuing a Career in Human Rights)

English, Finance, 1 season, 24 episodes, 16 hours, 22 minutes
In this podcast series, we interview human rights professionals from around the world about their careers; their journeys; the ups and downs; and the challenges they have faced during their careers. The guests will offer invaluable advice about working in human rights and practical steps you can take to prepare for a future career in the field. The podcast is hosted by Vicki Prais - an independent human rights consultant with over 20 years of experience in the industry.
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“When you have success, it’s worth every difficulty and challenge” - a conversation with Manu Krishnan, human rights professional

Manu Krishan is a human rights professional with an expertise on the rights of the child. He was responsible in the coordination and assistance to the Independent Expert leading the United Nations Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty and since then works in the Global Campus of Human Rights, where he coordinates and leads the global study follow up and dissemination programme. Manu first studied philosophy before completing a Master of arts in human rights and has worked for a number of International Organisations, and NGOs. In this interview, we discuss Manu’s early career path, the power of LinkedIn, mentorship, and the importance of self-care.
3/24/202237 minutes, 2 seconds
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"It’s a beautiful opportunity to believe in the good of people" - a conversation with Cara Tabachnick, crime and human rights journalist

Cara is a journalist and has been reporting and writing about crime, trafficking and human rights issues in the U.S. and abroad. Her work touches on all aspects of justice, including policing, migration, prisons, drugs, technology, and violence. She has written for publications such as Marie Claire, "O" Oprah Magazine, Bloomberg Businessweek, The Washington Post Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, The Christian Science Monitor, The Guardian, and Scientific American. From 2008-2015 she was the Deputy Director of the Center on Media, Crime and Justice at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. While there, she also served as the Managing Editor of the daily news service, The Crime Report. Cara is currently senior associate, media progammes at the Population Reference Bureau  where she manages their flagship USAID program Women’s Edition which trains female journalists in South Asia and Africa on public health issues.  In this interview, we discuss having an ‘international itch’, the value of advanced study, balance, and burnout.
3/8/202248 minutes, 22 seconds
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"People lose their humanity, part of our job is to give them their humanity" - a conversation with Saul Lehrfreud, Co-Executive Director, the Death Penalty Project

Saul Lehrfreund is the Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director of the Death Penalty Project, a London based charity, providing free legal representation and assistance to individuals facing the death penalty and other vulnerable prisoners. Saul has dedicated his career to representing prisoners facing the death penalty in criminal and constitutional proceedings and also before international tribunals and courts. He is a leading authority on capital punishment and international human rights law and has published and lectured extensively on these topics. In this interview, we discuss advanced study, the value of paid internships, career highlights including litigation at the Privy Council and successes in abolishing the Death Penalty in Sierra Leone. We also talk about self-care, career setbacks, and challenges.
3/8/202253 minutes, 50 seconds
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"Achievement, success comes in bits and pieces...sometimes it comes quickly" - a conversation with Jamila Raqib Executive Director of the Albert Einstein Institution

Jamila serves as the Executive Director of the Albert Einstein Institution based in Boston, United States. The mission of the Einstein Institution is to advance the worldwide study and strategic use of non-violent action in conflict. Jamila holds a degree in management from Simmons College and joined the Institution in 2002. In this interview, we discuss Jamila’s journey to her current work in non-violent action, the power of young people, presenting your best self in a CV, preserving intergenerational learning, and mentorship.
2/8/202245 minutes, 33 seconds
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"Be persistent but be flexible" - A conversation with Cynthia Orchard, international human rights lawyer

Cynthia Orchard is a human rights lawyer, researcher and policy expert with interests in migration, refugee issues, statelessness, and development. She has held positions at the Immigration Advisory Service (a large national charity in the UK), the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Redress, the Refugee Studies Centre, and Asylum Aid.  Her international experience extends to development work in El Salvador, Kazakhstan and the Ivory Coast, and she currently lives in Thailand. Cynthia has a degree in Political Science from the University of California, a JD from the University of Virginia, School of Law and an MSt in International Human Rights Law from the University of Oxford. In this interview, we discuss her international career, the importance of mentorship, and the importance of self-care.
12/31/202144 minutes, 22 seconds
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“Find what you love and plays to your strengths” - A conversation with Anna Henry, international social justice advocate

Anna has several decades of experience in social justice advocacy both in the UK and globally. She was CEO of the Global Initiative to End Corporal Punishment of Children until 2020, and previously she was Director of Children and Human Rights for the UK’s national human rights institution and children’s ombudsman – for both bodies leading on international policy, human rights treaty monitoring, regional and domestic human rights advocacy and research/publications. She has worked for bodies such as Amnesty International facilitating activism and human rights education, and for Praxis Refugee Community Organisation, setting up projects that included temporary housing, food banks and advice services for young refugees and asylum seekers, and projects to promote human rights education, political activism and community participation. She is currently working freelance as a consultant providing support to non-profit leaders on organisational design and donor engagement strategies, as well as providing interim management and policy development for a penal reform NGO delivering lived-experience centred advocacy. In this interview, we discuss global careers, returning to study, the power of networking, and her career highlights. Anna also shares her setback and challenges with listeners.
12/31/202145 minutes, 46 seconds
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"Good cases will come to you" - A conversation with Adam Wagner, human rights and public law barrister

Adam is a barrister currently practicing at Doughty Street Chambers, London. He is an experienced human rights and public lawyer with a strong civil law background.  He has acted at all levels including in the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights. Adam has acted in six public inquiries and is currently Specialist Advisor to the Joint Committee on Human Rights Covid-19 inquiry. Adam is a regular human rights commentator in the media and founded the multi-award winning human rights charity, EachOther and the UK Human Rights blog.  He also hosts the Better Human Podcast.  We discuss Adam’s journey to a career in human rights at the English Bar, how to stand out in applications, rejections and setbacks, self-care and the power of networking.
12/31/202135 minutes, 45 seconds
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"Know that there is a lot to learn if you are starting out in your career" - A conversation with Maya Foa, Deputy Director of Reprieve

Maya Foa is the Joint Executive Director at the London based human rights charity, Reprieve, where she leads a team of lawyers fighting against grave human rights abuses. Maya has conducted extensive advocacy before governments of Europe, the United States and regional and international bodies and has served as an expert advisor to the European Commission. Maya has been recognised for her work internationally and, in 2019, was selected as a World Economic Forum Young Leader and, in 2015, was awarded a Soros Justice Fellowship for her pioneering work on the death penalty. She is a frequent voice and commentator in the media. Maya studied French and Italian literature at Oxford University and did a postgraduate degree in Law. In this interview we discuss Maya’s early career in the theatre world, concepts of ‘hero human rights lawyers’,  the story behind a candidate’s CV, networking and Maya’s typical work day.
7/5/202129 minutes, 54 seconds
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"Be the best of yourself both professionally and personally" - A conversation with Karine Ardault, UN criminal investigator and analyst

Karine is an analyst and investigator focusing on armed conflicts and international crimes. She is currently a criminal investigator and an analyst with the United Nations. She has served with the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda as a legal advisor for the Trial Chambers and the Office of the President, with the Prosecution Support Cells (MONUSCO/UNDP) as a Prosecutions Advisor in Goma, DRC; with the OSCE as a Monitoring Officer in Donbas, Ukraine and as an SGBV Investigator/Gender Specialist with the UN Team of Experts on Kasai/DRC and the Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan (UN Women/OHCHR). As for personal work, she is currently focusing on women's place and role in violent extremism and on international criminal investigations methodology. We talk about non-linear careers, life in the field and the importance of logic and planning your career path.
5/17/202138 minutes, 33 seconds
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“Don’t let yourself be held back” - A conversation with Fritz Streiff, an atrocity crimes and human rights lawyer

Fritz Streiff is an atrocity crimes and human rights lawyer with 8 years’ experience in international criminal law, human rights law and anticorruption. Fritz qualified as a lawyer in the Netherlands and his experience extends to corporate law, international NGOs and international organizations. Fritz is currently working for clients in the areas of atrocity crimes committed in Syria and separately anti corruption investigations with links to the Netherlands and climate litigation.  We discuss making the switch between corporate and public interest careers, advanced studies, the importance of languages, Fritz’s typical work day and the joy of sports!
4/29/202147 minutes, 14 seconds
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"I very rarely have time to get bored" - A conversation with Toby Cadman, international criminal and human rights law barrister

Toby is a barrister and the Co-founder and Head of Guernica 37 International Justice Chambers in London. He is an established international law specialist in the areas of international criminal and humanitarian law, international terrorism, anti-corruption, maritime security, extradition and mutual legal assistance, and human rights law. Toby has appeared and been instructed in matters before the International Criminal Court, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, the European Court of Human Rights, the Bosnian War Crimes Chamber, the UN Human Rights Committee and the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights. In our chat, we discuss entering the law from a non-traditional background, on-the-job risks and dangers, networking, taking Syria to the ICJ and Kung Fu!
4/19/20211 hour, 1 minute, 53 seconds
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“Get soaked in the human rights world” - A conversation with UNHCR Human Rights Officer Octavio Amezcua Noriega

Octavio Amezcua Noriega is a Human Rights officer with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Mexico City, where he is in charge of the torture and criminal justice agenda. In previous roles, he worked at the Federal Government in Mexico in the design of public policies for the assistance and reparation of victims of human rights violations and as legal director of the Comisión Mexicana de Defensa y Promoción de los Derechos Humanos (CMDPDH) in Mexico, where he worked on strategic litigation on human rights. In our interview, we discuss the value and timing of undertaking a Masters degree, crafting a ‘human rights’ CV and top tips for breaking into the UN. Octavio also shares details of his day-to-day life as a Human Rights Officer at the UN and his career highlights litigating cases before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. We also talk about the importance of self-care for human rights professionals.
4/5/202140 minutes, 41 seconds
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"If you have passion at your core, you will succeed" - A conversation with Olivia Rope, leading expert in global criminal justice

Olivia Rope is the Executive Director of Penal Reform International (PRI) in London.  Olivia is a qualified lawyer and has a law degree from the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand, and an LLM in International and European law from the University of Amsterdam.  She has worked for Amnesty International in both Brussels and New Zealand. Olivia is a leading expert in global criminal justice issues.  In this conversation, we discuss Olivia’s typical day at PRI, career highlights, undertaking international advocacy in COVID times, networking, and getting hooked on International law!
3/21/202123 minutes, 54 seconds
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‘If you love it, do it’ - A conversation with Fernanda Perez Solla, international human rights lawyer

Fernanda Perez Solla is Austrian and is a Complaints Review Officer at the European Investment Bank in Luxembourg. Fernanda has worked with the World Bank, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and academia.  Her work has taken her to the Ivory Coast and the Democratic Republic of Congo.  She is admitted to the Bars of New York State and Buenos Aires. We talk about crafting a ‘human rights’ CV, the importance of languages, networking and the importance of self-care.
3/7/202137 minutes, 3 seconds
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‘Human rights is a beautiful system of values...that’s what you’re working for’ - A conversation with Manfred Nowak, international human rights law professor and former UN mandate holder

Manfred Nowak is Secretary General of the Global Campus of Human Rights in Venice, Professor of International Human Rights at Vienna University and Director of the Vienna Master of Arts in Human Rights. He is now the Director of the newly established and world-wide unique Master program in Applied Human Rights at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna. He has served in various expert functions, including as UN Expert on enforced disappearances (1993-2006), UN Special Rapporteur on Torture (2004-2010), judge at the Human Rights Chamber for Bosnia and Herzegovina (1996-2003) and Vice Chairperson of the EU Fundamental Rights Agency (2013-2018). Manfred has held various senior academic positions at a number of institutions in Europe and North America (Stanford University, Palo Alto). We discuss Manfred’s own human rights journey, the value of international experience, how to break into the UN (tip - start in the field!), life as a former UN Special Rapporteur on Torture (18 hour days!) and his career highlights.  We also discuss self-care and safety in conflict zones and the value of mentorship.
2/21/20211 hour, 4 minutes, 27 seconds
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“Find your niche and become really really good at it” - A conversation with Tehmina Khazi, about human rights NGO work

Tehmina currently works for the Why me? charity as a Project Manager, on a new project that aims to widen access to Restorative Justice for victims of crime with English as an Additional Language. From 2016 to 2018, she was a policy and advocacy officer for CESCA (Cork Equal and Sustainable Communities Alliance), an alliance of 18 equality and human rights groups in Cork, Ireland, which involved extensive policy submissions on issues like the eradication of racial and gender discrimination and the future of policing. From 2009 to 2016, she was the Director of British Muslims for Secular Democracy, a registered charity which aimed to tackle both anti-Muslim sentiment and extremism. She has 13 years experience in the human rights sector. In this interview we discuss skills and qualities to work in the sector, networking, the importance of self-care and finding your niche as a human rights professional.
2/10/202130 minutes, 26 seconds
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"I wanted to help the small person" - A conversation with Professor Leslie Thomas QC, a human rights barrister

Professor Leslie Thomas QC is a barrister at Garden Court chambers in London.  He is a leading expert in claims against the police and other public authorities, claims against corporate bodies, with expertise across the full spectrum of civil wrongs, civil litigation, human rights, data and privacy claims. He is an expert in all aspects of inquests and public inquiries, having represented many bereaved families, in particular where there has been abuse of state or corporate power. In November 2020, Professor Thomas won the Outstanding Contribution to Diversity and Inclusion Award at the Chambers UK Bar Awards. We discuss Professor Thomas’ early career representing Poll Tax protestors and his transition to his current practice. We also talk about the important qualities required to work in human rights, the value of networking, career highlights, his typical day and ‘list of monkeys’.  Finally, we talk about burnout and stress and his call to “take time out to sharpen the saw”.
1/26/202135 minutes, 56 seconds
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"Working for Human Rights is not like any job” - A conversation Nathalie Prouvez, a senior UN professional

In this episode, Vicki Prais speaks with Nathalie Prouvez.  The discussion covers Nathalie’s route into the human rights world, the importance and value of advanced study and languages, UN Volunteers, securing a UN internship, mentorship and self-care. Nathalie worked at the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights from 2002-2020. In 2010, she was appointed Chief of the Rule of Law and Democracy Section.  Her previous positions at the UN have included Secretary of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and Secretary of the Human Rights Committee. From 1995-2002, Nathalie was Legal Officer for Europe and Central Asia at the International Commission of Jurists.  She started her career as an academic, teaching in universities. She has a PhD in law from Lille University.
1/17/20211 hour, 9 minutes, 19 seconds
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"If you are open, there's so much that needs to be done". A conversation with Clive Baldwin - human rights expert and lawyer

Join us for an interview with Clive Baldwin, a senior legal advisor at Human Rights Watch. His areas of focus include MENA, West Africa, and discrimination law. Clive has also worked on European litigation at the AIRE Centre. His career has also taken him to Kosovo where he worked for the OSCE mission. In this interview, we discuss difficult career choices in our twenties, the world of international human rights advocacy, and the motivation for working in this sector. Clive will also share his thoughts on the value of networking, his typical day, and the importance of self-care.
12/4/202035 minutes
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Having a bit of chaos in your life is really important! A conversation with Gauri Sharma about working in the NGO world

Join us for an interview with Gauri Sharma, a Fellow at Project Second Chance, Turn your Concern into Action, Delhi, India a not-for-profit organisation focusing on the reformation, rehabilitation and reintegration of people in prison.  In this interview, Gauri shares her own social work route into the human rights sector, the importance of being open and adaptable, the value of volunteering and how a little chaos and not having a plan shouldn’t be a barrier!
10/26/202027 minutes, 27 seconds
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Not all legal aid lawyers of the year wear capes, some wear tiaras! A conversation with Tori Sicher - an immigration and asylum lawyer

Join us for an interview with Tori Sicher, immigration and asylum lawyer at Sutovic & Hartigan Solicitors in London.   Tori has had an exceptional career as a human rights lawyer representing clients from all over the world who are claiming asylum in the UK. In recognition of her work, Tori was awarded the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year, 2020 in the immigration and asylum field.  In this podcast, we discuss her interesting route into the law, the importance of having an eye for detail and the value of advanced study.
10/26/202041 minutes, 46 seconds
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The value of ongoing learning: A conversation with Jaanki Patel - a young human rights professional

With so many young human rights professionals starting out in their careers through internships or pro bono opportunities, I hear from Jaanki Patel about her experience, future aspirations and tips as she starts out in her human rights career. Jaanki talks about where her passion for human rights started in Kenya, the value of her internship experiences and ongoing learning and those all- important soft skills. Jaanki works at One Small Thing, a criminal justice charity in London.
10/26/202020 minutes, 31 seconds
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Go to the field, the sooner the better! A conversation with Noemí Pérez Vásquez - a transitional justice expert

Join us for an interview with Noemí Pérez Vásquez, a human rights expert in transitional justice, women’s rights and access to justice.  Noemí’s career has taken her to over 10 countries including South Sudan, DR Congo, Mexico, Timor Leste and Norway.   She has worked for the UN, UNICEF, the not-for-profit sector and private sector.  In this interview, we discuss the value of advanced study, field experience, specific advice for women in the sector and being humble and kind.
10/26/202036 minutes, 19 seconds
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An introduction to podcast host Vicki Prais with Aqsa Hussain (Co-founder of Human Rights Pulse)

Join us for the inaugural podcast for the Human Rights Pulse careers initiative: The Passion Factor. Vicki Prais, the host of this new podcast series sits down with Aqsa Hussain (co-founder of Human Rights Pulse) to speak about her journey into the field and how she hopes that this podcast and her resources will demystify the industry helping to guide the next generation of human rights practitioners.
10/26/202031 minutes, 2 seconds