Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples


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The Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (EMRIP) was established by the Human Rights Council, the UN’s main human rights body, in 2007 under Resolution 6/36 as a subsidiary body of the Council.


The Expert Mechanism provides the Human Rights Council with thematic advice, in the form of studies and research, on the rights of Indigenous peoples as directed by the Council. The Expert Mechanism may also suggest proposals to the Council for its consideration and approval.

Expert Mechanism Studies

The Expert Mechanism completed its first study on indigenous peoples’ right to education in 2009, along with Advice – including recommendations – about how an indigenous peoples’ right to education might be realised.  Its second study on indigenous peoples and the right to participate in decision making was completed in September 2011, which consists of a progress report and a final report, including Advice.  In September 2012, the Expert Mechanism submitted the following studies and reports to the Human Rights Council:

  • study on the role of languages and culture in the promotion and protection of the rights and identity of indigenous peoples

  • a report on indigenous peoples and the right to participate in decision making with a focus on extractive industries; and

  • a report on its questionnaire for states on best practices regarding possible appropriate measures and implementation strategies in order to attain the goals of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

The Expert Mechanism is made up of five independent experts on the rights of indigenous peoples. The experts are appointed by the Human Rights Council which is to give due regard to experts of indigenous origin as well as to gender balance and geographic representation. More information about the members of the Expert Mechanism can be found here.

Annual Sessions of the Expert Mechanism

The Expert Mechanism holds an annual session, usually in July, in which representatives from states, indigenous peoples, indigenous peoples’ organisations, civil society, inter-governmental organisations and academia take part.

Information about participation in the annual sessions of the Expert Mechanism, including accreditation, can be found here. The Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples and a member of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues are invited to attend the annual session of the Expert Mechanism to enhance coordination and cooperation between the mechanisms.


Funding for representatives of indigenous communities and organisations to attend the Expert Mechanism can be sought from the Voluntary Fund for Indigenous Populations.

Video on the Expert Mechanism

There is a video about the Expert Mechanism, which has been produced to raise awareness about the Expert Mechanism

NHRIs are welcome and encouraged to contribute. For further information please contact GANHRI Geneva Representative Katharina Rose ( and visit OHCHR webpage: