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FRAME - Fostering Human Rights Among European (External and Internal) Policies

In a large-scale endeavour, the four-year EU research project FRAME examined the ways in which the EU’s internal and external policies can contribute to the promotion of human rights.

The Lisbon Treaty has made the respect and promotion of human rights a core value and objective for all the EU’s actions and policies. However, the EU is confronted with important challenges in this respect, such as the fragmentation of human rights-related competences between itself and the Member States and the growing contestation by a number of third countries of certain understandings of human rights and of the position of the EU to promote them.

Financed by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme for Research, FRAME has analyzed the promotion of human rights in all areas of EU external and internal policies and has developed detailed policy recommendations. The project was implemented by a consortium of 19 European and non-European partner institutions, led by the Centre for Global Governance Studies at the University of Leuven.

The research objectives included:

  • a better conceptualization and operationalization of human rights, democracy and the rule of law in the EU, other organizations and third countries
  • appraising human rights protection systems at the EU, international, regional, national and sub-national levels and their interactions
  • clarifying how human rights promotion can be rendered more effective in the maze of EU institutions, competences and policies
  • formulating, disseminating and valorizing policy tools (such as benchmarks and indicators) to monitor and improve the effectiveness of EU human rights policy

For more information on the thematic set-up of the project please consult the project flyer in the attachment.

The FRAME publications to which the BIM has contributed are available for download below, as is the brochure "How to better foster human rights among EU policies - FRAME final recommendations". This outcome document contains 40 specific recommendations based on the research findings and was presented at the final conference in Brussels on 26 April 2017. A comprehensive documentation of this high-ranking event can be found in the Final Conference Report.

For further project publications and information, please visit the project website.

Persons involved: 

Cluster Lead, Steering Committee Member
Karin Lukas

Work package Lead WP 4
Monika Mayrhofer

Susanne Fraczek, Katharina Häusler, Claudia Hüttner, Anna Müller-Funk, Julia Planitzer, Helmut Sax, Katrin Wladasch

Project administration
Isolde Prommer, Karl Schönswetter

Contact persons: 
Lead Organisation: 
Centre for Global Governance Studies, Leuven, Belgium
Partner organisations: 
19 partner organisations including the Danish Institute of Human Rights, Åbo Akademi, Sevilla University, Nottingham University, Eötvös Loránd University, Pretoria University, Indian Society of International Law
Project start: 
Project end: 
Project completed: 
Funded by: 
European Commission, Directorate-General Research