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Experience-Informed Research

Working with over 2,000 people across the UK each year, we have a unique insight into the challenges people often face in securing their human rights. We see how national laws and policies can often create barriers for people and communities advocating for their protections to be met. We also see how staff in public bodies are often on the sharp line of being told to implement these national laws and policies, which they know make it harder for them to uphold people’s human rights.

This is why we make sure our policy work is underpinned by people’s lived experience. One of the ways we do this is through experience-informed research. We create opportunities for people, communities, and staff in public bodies, to share their lived experience with us and what solutions they want to see.

Our experience-informed research means we are able to amplify the voices of people across the UK, too often marginalised in policy discussions. Together, we produce powerful analysis and recommendations to decision-makers which combine lived experience and expertise in the Human Rights Act in practice.

Our experience-informed research is usually done through tailored, plain-language workshops which:

  • provide the opportunity to access some initial human rights training from BIHR;

  • safely explore people’s experiences of the issues, to gather both statistics and stories that bring the problems in question to life

  • map experiences to the human rights in the Human Rights Act, enabling them to be articulated as concerns about people’s legal protections;

  • identify if and how this engages the legal duties of public officials under the Human Rights Act to understand what accountability there should be;

  • suggest recommendations for future change; and

  • include follow-up surveys to gather more information and to enable other people to also share their views.

We will often work in collaboration with other groups to develop our research workshops and provide support such as Easy Read and BSL options.

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