The paper presents strategies to build new narratives about human rights work as the human rights field is undergoing a long-term period of transformation instead of only a moment of crisis.
It suggests three narrative responses towards three common populist strategies: First, a strategy focusing on culture should be the answer to controversy, cooperation towards crisis, and community building towards conflict.
Within this, the paper includes ideas for tactical, organisational, and field-wide changes for human rights work to create a more effective change. The tactical changes shall focus on a new, more positive framework of human rights work. The organisational changes must include new skills and a diversity of expertise in the staff of the human rights organisation. The field-wide changes suggest two inevitable transformations: working on a long-term basis with funders and collaborating with a globally networked media landscape and movements that are working on different causes in different places to work together and ultimately building support for shared values.