Human Rights Review

, Volume 20, Issue 1, pp 23–45 | Cite as

Adjusted Ratification: Post-Commitment Actions to UN Human Rights Treaties

  • Audrey L. ComstockEmail author


A rich literature examines human rights treaty commitment and compliance. A subset of this literature has begun to examine the international legal actions states make following treaty ratification. I argue that the ways that states legally engage with treaties following commitment to UN human rights treaties is much more nuanced and differentiated than scholars have thus far presented via Reservation, Understanding, and Declaration. I introduce a first descriptive analysis of what I term Post-Commitment Actions (PCAs) to UN human rights treaties and generate varying hypotheses of why different PCAs have different relationships with expected human rights practices. I conduct a preliminary statistical analysis of the effect of PCAs on human rights practices and find that they are varied and important. Some PCAs result in improved human rights, while others result in worse human rights. I conclude by calling for further future study into these treaty actions.


Treaties United Nations Ratification RUDs ICCPR 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Arizona State University, School of Social and Behavioral SciencesGlendaleUSA

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