National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) - Take Action

Key moments for NHRIs to engage in the UPR

NHRIs are encouraged to actively participate in all phases of the UPR.

As described in the section "What is the UPR?", this mechanism is a full-circle process comprised of three key stages:

  1. Preparation for the Review

  2. Between the Review and Adoption

  3. Implementation of the Recommendations

It is a cyclical process because each review process is based on the implementation of previously received recommendations.

All the Stakeholders can get involved in each phase in a different way. The following section will show how NHRIs can get involved at each stage.

More information on the participation of NHRIs in the UPR and other international human rights mechanisms is available at: 

Report of the Secretary-General on National institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights (HRC)

Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions

1. Preparation for the Review

The UPR process covers essential parts of the core mandate and work of NHRIs, including reporting on national situations, encouraging broad national consultations, raising awareness around the Universal Human Rights System empowering stakeholders, and advising the State on the implementation of recommendations emanating from UN processes, including the UPR.

At this stage, NHRIS can get involved as follows


Participate actively in UPR national consultations

Ensure that the experience and perspective of NHRIs are reflected in the national report;


Submit an independent report


Consult with Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) 

NHRIs should consult on key human rights issues and recommendations to address; ensure that regional CSOs and representatives of “at risk” groups are included;


Conduct advocacy activities 

To ensure key human rights issues and recommendations are addressed by the Recommending States in the review; 


Raise awareness

About the opportunity for CSOs to submit a UPR report;


Provide a safe space 

For CSOs and the international community to discuss the human rights situation.

2. Between the Review and Adoption

UPR examinations, and adoptions of subsequent reports, take place over a period of approximately four to six months. During this time NHRIs should also carry out actions to ensure that the efforts leading up to the Review keep their momentum. Let us see in detail:


Organise public screenings of the review

And discuss review outcomes (e.g. topics discussed, delegation responses, recommendations received); 

Raise awareness of recommendations received

For example by simplifying the content of the recommendations, translating and disseminating them in national/local languages;


The acceptance of UPR recommendations;

A-Status NHRIs are entitled to intervene immediately after the State under Review (SuR) during the adoption of the report at the regular session of the HRC.

3. Implementation of Recommendations

Ensuring effective implementation of recommendations is at the very heart of the UPR process and relies on all stakeholders’ engagement. Upon completion of a review, some States are keen to quickly put the UPR exercise behind them. It is therefore essential that NHRIs continue to advocate for the implementation of recommendations between reviews as well as actively participate in their implementation.


Publicise the outcomes 

Of the UPR via NHRI platforms and networks;


Include relevant UPR recommendations

Into NHRI internal work plans, action plans, strategies, recommendations, and reports to the government;


Monitor the implementation 

Of accepted and noted recommendations; share your findings with recommending States, UN agencies and the HRC;


Work with Government

To implement the recommendations by:

  • Engaging in a dialogue with the Government;
  • Advising State authorities on the development of legislation, institutional frameworks, policies, action plans, and programmes to implement the recommendations;


Submit a UPR mid-term report.