Public international law mandates states to exercise due diligence to prevent, protect, fulfill and promote human rights. This principle is commonly referred to as the “due diligence” principle. The obligation extends to not only preventing human rights abuses by the state and its agents, but also those by non-state actors in the so-called “private realm.” In order to properly address the violence committed against women, particularly by non-state actors, it is imperative that we have a deeper understanding of this obligation. What does it mean to act with “due diligence?”  What exact actions are required? When has this obligation been satisfied? Do the obligations change according to the circumstances? A deeper understanding is needed in order for international monitoring mechanisms to accurately gauge States' compliance with this obligation, and hold them accountable accordingly. States too need guidance on what exact actions are expected in order to track their own progress. 

This project, through collection of primary data in collaboration with relevant stakeholders, aims to facilitate evidence-based analysis on the current state of compliance with the due diligence standard nationally, regionally and globally. The project is primarily executed by two project directors: Janine Moussa  and Zarizana Abdul Aziz (Visting Scholar, Columbia University and Northeastern University School of Law).

Learn more by visiting the Due Diligence Project website.

Advisory Committee

  • Pramila Patten, Expert, Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, from Mauritius
  • Cees Flinterman, Expert, Human Rights Committee of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, from the Netherlands
  • Charlotte Bunch, Professor, Founding Director and Senior Scholar, Center for Women's Global Leadership, Rutgers University, USA
  • Hilary Charlesworth, Professor, Centre for International Governance and Justice, Australian National University, Australia.
  • Kamala Chandrakirana,Working Group on Discrimination against Women in Law and Practice, from Indonesia.


Janine Moussa
Zarizana Abdul Aziz


Presentation at Workshop on Domestic Violence in Asia
October 7-8. 2010, Singapore
Presentation at European Women’s Lobby
June 17-18, 2011, Brussels, Belgium
Expert Meeting on Violence Against Women
April 26th - 27th 2011, Boston, USA
Public Forum
April 28, 2011, Boston, USA
Presentation at Expert Meeting on Challenging and Resisting Fundamentalisms
September 7-9, 2011, Istanbul, Turkey
Presentation at Latin America and the Caribbean Encuentra Feminista
23-26 November 2011, Bogota, Colombia
Presentation at Asia Pacific Feminist Forum
December 12-14, 2011, Chiang Mai, Thailand

For more information visit: