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The Ties that Bind: A Network Analysis of Human Rights International Nongovernmental Organizations

  • Amanda Murdie


Much scholarship concerning human rights international nongovernmental organizations (HR-INGOs) focuses on the central role they play within transnational advocacy networks. Despite this theoretical focus on networks, there has been scant empirical attention on the characteristics of the HR-INGO network or on whether the network characteristics of a HR-INGO matter for its advocacy output. Introducing a new relational dataset on 681 HR-INGOs, this article finds that the HR-INGO network is somewhat like a public good and that the organizations who utilize it benefit in terms of their international advocacy output. Other findings focus on how the structural characteristics of organizations can influence their propensity to connect to each other and how ‘free-riding’ can limit the benefits organizations receive from the network.



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Department of Political Science, University of Missouri (email: The author wishes to record thanks to Sam Bell, Patricia Blocksome, John Boli, Doug Bond, K. Chad Clay, Will Moore, Dan Reiter, Beth Simmons, and Mike Ward, as well as the anonymous reviewers and the Editor Hugh Ward for helpful comments and advice on this work at all stages of the process. Special thanks are due both to David Brewington and to David R. Davis for their assistance with earlier drafts. Online appendices and data replication sets are available at



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