About HRI

The Binghamton University Human Rights Institute (HRI) advances research, teaching and high impact student engagement in human rights. Drawing on our roots in the university's Citizenship, Rights, and Cultural Belonging Transdisciplinary Area of Excellence, we bring a multi-faceted human rights perspective to important social problems and contribute to evidence-based policymaking as well as critical discourses in human rights. Binghamton University's research excellence and New York state's rich history of advocating and advancing human rights inform our efforts, as the HRI develops initiatives with rights-based perspectives to impact public policy in New York state, the United States and internationally.


David L. Cingranelli, Co-Director

Professor of Political Science
Offices: LN-G100 and LN-G56

David Cingranelli is a Professor of Political Science at Binghamton University, SUNY. He and his students developed some of the earliest quantitative measures of national human rights practices. He has written widely on human rights, democracy, and governance. His 2007 book with Rodwan Abouharb, Human Rights and Structural Adjustment, (Cambridge University Press) demonstrated the negative human rights impacts of World Bank and IMF program lending in developing countries. He is a former President of the Human Rights Section of the American Political Science Association. Until 2012, he served as the co-director of the Cingranelli and Richards (CIRI) Human Rights Data Project, the largest and most widely used human rights data set in the world. Presently, he and his colleague, Mikhail Filippov, are working in collaboration on a successor to the CIRI project, which is called the "CI-RIGHTS" data project. The CI-Rights dataset (1981-2015) is now available for download from this website. Along with Colin Barry and Chad Clay, he also created a new data providing numerical scores for eight worker rights (1994-2010). This WorkR dataset is also available for download from this website.

Alexandra S. Moore, Co-Director

Professor of English, General Literature and Rhetoric
Offices: LN-G100 and LN-G29

Alexandra Moore’s publications include Vulnerability and Security in Human Rights Literature and Visual Culture (2015) and Regenerative Fictions: Postcolonialism, Psychoanalysis, and the Nation as Family (2004). She has also co-edited several volumes: The Routledge Companion to Literature and Human Rights (with Sophia A. McClennen, 2015); Teaching Human Rights in Literary and Cultural Studies (with Elizabeth Swanson Goldberg, 2015); Globally Networked Teaching in the Humanities (with Sunka Simon, 2015); and Theoretical Perspectives on Human Rights and Literature (with Goldberg, 2011). Her latest collection, Witnessing Torture: Perspectives of Torture Survivors and Human Rights Workers (with Swanson), was published in 2018. Her current research  focuses on human rights violations in the ongoing War on Terror. She also has two additional edited collections under development: Writing Beyond the State (with Samantha Pinto) and Technologies of Human Rights Representations.

Advisory board

Serdar Atav

Professor of Public Health and Nursing

Serdar A. Atav is a professor of health policy and research at Binghamton University. His research focuses on health promotion and disease prevention in the context of public health policy as it relates to vulnerable populations. His publications, presentations, grants, consulting efforts and other community oriented projects reflect his attention to vulnerable populations and his strengths in policy, quantitative methods, evaluation and data analysis. In 2003, he received the SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching. He has published widely in peer-reviewed journals including recent articles in Nursing Education Today and the Journal of Aging Research. He is a faculty leader of the Binghamton University Working Group on Poverty and Inequality. 

Bat-Ami Bar On 

Professor of Philosophy
Bat-Ami Bar On conducts research in social and political theory with a primary focus on a sub-area that is best described through its normative concerns with violent political conflict and social-political order. She is the author of three edited collections and a monograph, The Subject of Violence, in addition to many essays on feminism, militarism and violence. Her current research is located at the intersection of post-war justice and refugee studies.

Elisa Camiscioli

Associate Professor of History; Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies
Elisa Camiscioli is a historian of migration with a focus on modern France. She is the author of Reproducing the French Race: Immigration, Intimacy, and Embodiment in the Early Twentieth Century (Duke University Press, 2009), as well as several articles and book chapters on gender and race in European and global debates on immigration and colonialism. Her current work explores trafficking, travel and illicit migration in the modern French Atlantic world. She is also the co-editor of the Journal of Women's History.

John Cheng (ex-officio)

Associate Professor of Asian and Asian American Studies
John Cheng is a historian of modern America and the history of science and technology. His book, Astounding Wonder (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012), explores the emergence of science fiction as a popular cultural genre in interwar America and its relationship to popular science, and was selected by Locus Magazine for its 2012 Recommended Reading list. He is currently working on two new inter-related projects: Unnatural Citizens examines racial denaturalization and expatriation and their consequences for Asian Americans and the racial character of 20th-century American citizenship. Barred Zones considers the geographic implications of racial modernity, exploring the inter-relationships between technology, territory, law and race for the United States and other emergent nation-states in the turn of the 20th-century's age of empire.

Cheng also contributed to the documentary series Race: The Power of an Illusion (California Newsreel, 2003), holds a patent from youthful summers as a research intern and before coming to Binghamton, was involved with a number of Asian American community organizations in the Washington, D.C., and Chicago metro areas.

Suzy Lee

Assistant Professor of Human Development
Suzy Lee is a sociologist and legal scholar whose work focuses on international labor migration, the transformations in migration law and policy in the neoliberal era and the implication of migration policy for the protection of migrants’ rights. Her primary line of research examines the development of sending state policy regimes, with a focus on the Philippine’s contract migration program. Other projects include studies on immigrants’ access to public and legal services in the U.S., service provision to survivors of trafficking in developing countries, the effect of neoliberal economic policy and migration regimes.

Affiliated faculty and staff

We welcome new affiliates. If you’re interested in getting involved, fill out this affiliate interest form.

  • Olga Shvetsova, political science
  • Susan Wolcott, economics
  • Lubna Chaudhry, human development
  • John Cheng, Asian and Asian American studies
  • Kelly Clark, Q Center
  • Sidney Dement, Russian studies
  • Elizabeth DiGangi, anthropology
  • Mikhail Filippov, political science
  • Óscar F. Gil-García, human development
  • S.G. Grant, teaching, learning and educational leadership
  • Nicole Hassoun, philosophy
  • Michael Jacobson, Office of Strategic Research Initiatives
  • Sabina Perrino, anthropology and linguistics
  • Jean Quataert, history
  • Birgit Brander Rasmussen, English, general literature and rhetoric
  • Anthony Reeves, philosophy
  • Kent F. Schull, history
  • Stacey Shipe, social work
  • Leo Wilton, human development
  • Wan Yu, geography
  • Lisa Yun, English, general literature and rhetoric
  • Kate Martineau, Asian and Asian American Studies
  • Olubunmi B Oyewuwo-Gassikia, social work
  • Joshua M. Price, sociology
  • Diren Valayden, human development
  • Denise Yull, human development
  • Lubna Omar, anthropology

Graduate and undergraduate fellows

We welcome undergraduate and graduate student fellows. Our student fellows develop internship possibilities for other students, assist with event planning and hosting and may participate in HRI colloquia and workshops.

To apply, send a brief statement of interest, résumé and letter of support from a faculty member to Professor Alexandra Moore, amoore@binghamton.edu.

Graduate students

  • Jennifer DeGregorio, English
  • Daimys Garcia, Comparative Literature
  • Laura Johnsen, Anthropology
  • Shahriar Islam, Human Development
  • Rabiu Abubakari, Human Development
  • Dominic Davy, Human Development
  • Jeremy Berkowitz, Political Science
  • Lucia Pfizenmaier, Broome County HEARS and Sustainable Communities

Undergraduate students

  • Anna Gaspar Pereira Endo, Political Science
  • Ivan Gubarev, Political Science
  • Rati Lolashvili, Political Science
  • Morgan Harrington, English

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2018 Annual Report