Month: November 2021

Pandemics and Portals: Rights In An Era Of Tech Innovation

Thursday, November 18, 2021
4:00pm – 5:30pm
Virtual Event

About the Lecture

Sushma’s ESRG Lecture will draw on her co-authored book (along with Bill Schulz, former executive director of Amnesty International USA and Carr Center Senior Fellow), The Coming Good Society: Why New Realities Demand New Rights (Harvard University Press 2020). Drawing on their vast experience as human rights advocates, the authors challenge us to think hard about how rights evolve with changing circumstances. To preserve and promote the good society – one that protects its members’ dignity and fosters an environment in which people will want to live – we must at times rethink the meanings of familiar rights and consider the introduction of entirely new rights.

Speaker Bio

Sushma Raman is the executive director of the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy. She brings over two decades of global experience launching, scaling, and leading social justice and philanthropic programs and collaboratives, building capabilities of grassroots human rights organizations and their leaders, and teaching graduate courses in the public policy schools at UCLA, USC, Tufts Fletcher School, and Harvard Kennedy School. Sushma has worked at the Ford Foundation, where she helped launch and scale social justice and women’s funds around the world, and at the Open Society Foundation, where she was a Program Officer on the founding staff for US Programs on immigrant and refugee rights. She was a Fellow with the German Marshall Fund and the UCLA Luskin School, and is currently a member of the board of RFK Human Rights, established by the family of Bobby Kennedy. She has taught graduate courses on economic justice; inter-sectoral leadership; philanthropy and nonprofit management; global civil society, the NGO sector, and the state; and policy communications for decision-makers.

Sponsored by the Research Program on Economic and Social Rights at the Human Rights Institute.

Contractual Deterrence and the Ethical Supply Chain

Tuesday, November 30, 2021
1:00pm - 2:15pm
Virtual Event

Workshop on Contractual Deterrence and the Ethical Supply Chain

Presenter: Robert Bird, University of Connecticut School of Business

Discussant: Gastón de los Reyes, Glasgow Caledonian New York College

A harmful byproduct of the global economy is the proliferation of abuses in global supply chains. Too often lead firms and suppliers do not effectively collaborate. Lead firms require human rights and sustainability standards while also demanding extremely low cost goods and fast production deadlines. Suppliers faced with the impossible choice of financial survival or compliance with ethical standards, attempt to evade lead firm demands. The result is an illusion of governance that prioritizes investigations over actual changes and perpetuates “slow violence” against local environments and vulnerable populations.

To respond to this problem, this manuscript proposes a new paradigm I call ‘contractual deterrence.’ Contractual deterrence leverages a centuries-old theory of criminal deterrence, reinterprets it to incorporate a modern understanding of sanctions and rewards, and applies the theory to the contractual context of the modern global supply chain. Contractual deterrence is based upon three prongs: that enforcement of ethical supply chain standards must be predictably certain, equitably significant, and swiftly implementable. This manuscript explores these prongs and shows how the theory advances sustainability and human rights literatures. This manuscript also argues for a new multistakeholder theory of social responsibility that challenges western-dominated thinking and encourages a joint and equal partnership between lead firm and supplier in order to address pressing problems facing supply chains today.

The Business and Human Rights Workshop is dedicated to the development and discussion of works-in-progress and other non-published academic research. The paper will be distributed to registered participants prior to the Workshop. This event will not be recorded.

This event is sponsored by the Business and Human Rights Initiative, a partnership founded by Dodd Human Rights Impact, the UConn School of Business, and the Human Rights Institute.

Human Rights Film+ Series: American Insurrection

Thursday, February 10, 2022
4:00pm - 5:30pm
Virtual Event

About This Event

In advance of the discussion, please watch the film. American Insurrection is available to stream online, free through PBS FRONTLINE.

Virtual Discussion Event – February 10 at 4:00pm - 5:30pm

The Human Rights Film+ Series presents American Insurrection, a PBS Frontline production directed by Richard Rowley with correspondent A.C. Thompson. Join us for an insightful and provocative discussion about the film, the events of January 6th, and the violent movements that threaten to upend the foundations of American democracy.

Film Synopsis: American Insurrection (2021, 85 mins) examines the individuals and ideologies behind a wave of extremist violence that culminated in the January 6, 2021 attack on the United States Capitol, and where the movement may be headed a year after the attack.


  • Senator Christopher J. Dodd, former U.S. Senator from Connecticut
  • A.C. Thompson, Senior Reporter with ProPublica and Frontline Correspondent
  • Aaron Hiller, Chief Counsel for the House Committee on the Judiciary
  • Emily Kaufman, Researcher for the Anti-Defamation League


  • Glenn Mitoma, Director, Dodd Impact

This event is sponsored by the Human Rights Institute, Dodd Impact, the Department of Digital Media and Design, and the Department of Journalism.