Anja Mihr (born 1969) Professor of political science and human rights researcher.
HUMBOLDT-VIADRINA Governance Platform
Pariser Platz 6 , D – 10117 Berlin
DAAD Associate Professor at the OSCE Academy in Bishkek Kyrgyzstan
I am the founder and program director of the Center on Governance through Human Rights at the HUMBOLDT-VIADRINA Governance Platform (gGmbH) in Berlin.
In 2018 I was appointed DAAD Associate Professor for Human Rights, Democratization, International Relations, and Transitional Justice, at the OSCE Academy in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.
Previously I held Professorships for Public Policy at the Willy Brandt School of Public Policy at Erfurt University in Germany and was an Associate Professor at the Netherlands Institute of Human Rights (SIM) at Utrecht University in the Netherlands; and had numerous other positions such as Head of Rule of Law at The Hague Institute for Global Justice and I was Visiting Professor at Peking University (Beida) in Beijing. I also worked as Director of Program at the European Inter-University Center for Human Rights and Democratization (EIUC)/ Global Campus in Venice, and visiting lecturer at SIPA Columbia University in New York, and Humboldt University in Berlin.
In 2001 I received my Ph.D. from Free University in Berlin, with the thesis topic on ‘The Impact of Amnesty International‘s human rights works in the GDR’ (East Germany) during the period of the Cold War.
I currently serve a five years term as a Member of the Scientific Committee of the EU Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) till 2023.
Theoretical & Conceptual Works
In my 2019 book on ‘Regime Consolidation and Transitional Justice’, with Cambridge University Press, I develop a theory to explain the impact of Transitional Justice measures in the context of (democratic) political regime consolidations. For example, vetting and lustration processes, trials, compensations and reparations, amnesties impact the way a political system changes and consolidates. The core essence of this theory is to explain, how after a radical rupture or war, the new political system and its actors are able and willing to implement measures that allow political institutions and actors to democratically progress and increase their quality of democracy, or not.
Whether a political regime consolidates democratically or autocratically, depends on how political actors during this process are capable to put blame on all sides when dealing with the past or not.
Furthermore, the case studies on Turkey, Germany, and Spain illustrate, how over several generations after regime change, Transitional Justice measures mutually reinforce themselves, both in a downward (autocratic) spiral, as the example Turkey and East Germany show, as well as an upward (democratic) spiral as illustrated by the cases of West-Germany and Spain, depending on how exclusive or inclusive they are applied by civil society, victim and victimizers, governments and other formal and informal sectors of society.
In my work on glocal governance, I develop an analytical framework to assess how local actors and institutions implement global and international norms in order to govern effectively, without the interference of state authorities or governments. Regions, cities, and communities – even across State borders – are governed glocally.
I argue that over the past decades, the dramatic dissemination and the universal acknowledgment of international norms, such as human rights, health, and trade standards, are directly implemented on local and community levels, as seen during the Covid-19 Pandemic since 2020. The Covid-Pandemic has pushed global, national, and local actors a Glocal Twist in dealing with the Pandemic. Local business, civil society, and city counselors adhere to/ and apply global trade and taxation laws, health, and education standards. They implement and materialize international labor laws, empower women, protect children’s rights and practice multi-stakeholder participation standards. Therefore, glocalization and privatization of public sectors have eroded territorial Nation-State in almost all public policy matters such as security, health, education, and political economy. Due to the power gap that eroded Statehood has left behind on all levels of government, glocal governance replaces weak, defective, or corrupt governmental structures.