Poverty and Politics in the SDGs (with Philip Alston)

by | Jan 14, 2019

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Interviewee: Philip Alston

Philip G. Alston is an Australian international law scholar and human rights practitioner. He is John Norton Pomeroy Professor of Law at New York University School of Law, and co-Chair of the law school's Center for Human Rights and Global Justice. In human rights law, Alston has held a range of senior UN appointments for over two decades, including United Nations Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, a position he held from August 2004 to July 2010. In 2014 he was appointed to an unpaid role as UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights.

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Interviewer: Kira Allmann

Kira Allmann is the OxHRH Communications Director and a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Media Law and Policy at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies at the University of Oxford. Her current research focuses on digital inequality, exploring community-driven grassroots solutions to closing the digital divide. She leads several research projects, using ethnographic methods to study the role of community-owned internet networks, local digital skills training, and public internet access points in promoting digital inclusion. Kira is also a research partner of the Whose Knowledge? campaign, which works to center the knowledge of marginalized communities on the web. She completed her DPhil in Oriental Studies (Islamic World) at the University of Oxford on a Rhodes Scholarship and also holds an MPhil in Modern Middle Eastern Studies (University of Oxford) and a B.A. in Government and Linguistics (The College of William and Mary).

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Sustainable Development Goal 1 is to eliminate poverty in all its forms everywhere. Poverty stands in the way of people enjoying many of their basic human rights and it can also be the product of violations of certain rights, like the right to education. Tackling global poverty requires bridging questions of human rights law and economic development. In this episode Prof Philip Alston (UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights) talks about the challenges of using both human rights law and economic development agendas to address poverty.

**This episode is part of a special series on “Working Together: Human Rights and the Sustainable Development Goals” a British Academy project led by Professor Sandy Fredman, Fellow of the British Academy and Director of the Oxford Human Rights Hub. As part of this project, the Academy convened a roundtable in January 2018 with academic experts, policymakers and practitioners from the UK and overseas to discuss the ways in which human rights and developmental goals can work together to achieve the SDG agenda and particularly gender equality and women’s empowerment.**

Produced by: Kira Allmann (University of Oxford)
Interview(s) with: Philip Alston (New York University)
Music by: Rosemary Allmann

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