We have published our review of the UK’s approach to democracy and human rights. The government’s response is due in March.
Promoting and protecting democracy and human rights overseas is a long-standing UK government commitment, reiterated in the 2022 UK government’s strategy for international development and the 2021 Integrated review of security, defence, development and foreign policy. In 2015, for the first time, democracy and human rights became globally agreed development objectives, not only through SDG 16, but also as part of commitments to gender equality, combatting inequalities and leaving no one behind. In addition to the SDGs, the UK government is also the initiator and/or an active member of a range of global coalitions, from the Community of Democracies to the Open Government Partnership.
The UK’s democracy and human rights portfolio includes both in-country and centrally managed programmes. The purpose of this review was to explore how effectively the UK aid programme has responded to the emergence of new threats to democracy and human rights on the global stage.