The evaluation covered three programmes funded jointly by the European Commission and the Council of Europe relating to democratisation and human rights in the North Caucasus region: North Caucasus joint programme to strengthen democratic stability, Russia V Strengthening the rule of law and the protection of human rights and Russia VI Strengthening federalism, regional and local democracy and regional HR protection mechanisms.

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The European Network of Legal Experts in the Non-Discrimination Field was created by the European Commission in December 2007 with the purpose of establishing a network of legal experts in the field of discrimination on the grounds of racial and ethnic origin, religion or belief, age, disability and sexual orientation and to support the Commission’s work by providing independent information and advice on relevant developments in the EU Member States and more recently the additional countries of Iceland, Liechtenstein, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Norway and Turkey.

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The project aim was to support capacity-building for the NGO Centre, NGOs and their networks, as well as to strengthen the dialogue between government and civil society. The Government Office for European Affairs was assisted in the development of a National NGO Strategy, improvements to the regulatory framework (legal and tax status of NGOs) and the development of an NGO funding mechanism. The project also facilitated the establishment of a framework and structure for dialogue between government and NGOs (at central and local level).

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The project, funded by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs Matra Programme, supported trade unions in Hungary and Romania in developing a strategy in the area of vocational education and training (VET). The support led to collective agreements with employers’ organisations with VET provisions and a common funding structure for VET. The areas covered were the agricultural and metal-working sectors.

The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) commissioned this study to further develop its strategic approach to technical cooperation with governments to respect, protect and promote human rights. The project consisted of five country studies and thematic studies on national human rights institutions, national human rights action plans, human rights education and administration of justice and a synthesis report. The conclusions and recommendations in the synthesis report were adopted by the OHCHR and forwarded to the UN Commission for Human Rights.

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About our projects

Multi-annual & multi-country EU-wide networks

A major strand of our work in the field of non-discrimination and equality is the multi-annual and multi-country EU-wide networks, established and coordinated by Human European Consultancy for the European Commission. These are the Academic Network of European Disability Experts (ANED), managed with the Centre for Disability Studies at the University of Leeds, and the European network of legal experts in gender equality and non-discrimination law, managed with the Migration Policy Group and the University of Utrecht. Over the years, these networks have continually produced ground-breaking national, comparative, synthesis and thematic reports.


Our research is geared to providing policy-relevant and evidence-based information and analysis that supports respect for and protection of internationally recognised human rights. For example, for the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) we have conducted research on access to justice in discrimination cases in the EU and undertaken a study of data collection on the social situation of people with intellectual disabilities and mental health problems. Through FRA’s research network, FRALEX, we provided reports at the international and EU level and for more than 20 EU Member States on a wide range of topics, such as child trafficking, homophobia, data protection and national human rights institutions. Within the framework of the FRALEX successor, FRANET, we have produced reports on the principle of non-refoulement (prohibition on returning refugees to persecution) and on the social inclusion of migrants. For the European Commission we have analysed and assessed the establishment of equality bodies in the EU Member States and EFTA countries. We have also carried out a mapping project on the legal and policy framework for anti-discrimination in Turkey and the Western Balkans. In addition, we have conducted extensive research on the feasibility of harmonisation within the EU of legislation combating violence against women and children and violence based on sexual orientation.

Training and awareness-raising

Our evidence-based analysis and advice, together with target-group-specific approaches, are the key elements of our training and awareness-raising projects. For the European Commission we have organised good practice exchange seminars on all discrimination grounds for representatives of the governments of the EU Member States. We have also run anti-discrimination and diversity training for NGOs and trade unions. These were later followed by awareness-raising seminars in the area of non-discrimination and equality, targeted at civil society organisations in general.

Impact assessment and indicator development

Donors require evaluations to assess the impact of the projects they fund. Evaluations we have undertaken include projects funded within the framework of the European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights, a global review of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights technical cooperation programme and various evaluations for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. In addition to the evaluations themselves, we contribute to the development of methodology for evaluations, such as developing indicator approaches and frameworks. Examples include outcome indicators for human rights interventions for the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and the Dutch organisation Cordaid. More recently we supported FRA in developing statistical outcome indicators for Article 19 CRPD (on independent living).

Our office

Wilhelminapark 61
3581 NP Utrecht 
The Netherlands
T: +31 (0)30 232 64 30

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