Resources for Information Management and Preservation Events Standard Formats

The Events Standard Formats are a method of monitoring and recording abuses of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights in order to identify patterns. This approach focuses on individual cases of human rights violations, capturing essential information including:

  • what happened, where, and when
  • the possible human rights violations that were committed
  • the persons involved: which alleged perpetrator did what to which victim, what are the sources of information and which interventions were made

This method enables complex scenarios to be documented in a straightforward manner. Originally published in 1993, the Events Standard Formats were drafted with wide input from experienced human rights practitioners as well as representatives from intergovernmental organizations to ensure they would meet requirements for handling information on violations.

They were last revised in 2001, and are still widely used today by organisations around the world. Although they aren’t applicable or appropriate for every situation, the Events Standard Formats have had significant influence on existing thinking around the documentation of human rights violations.

Access the methodology in PDF form below:

PDF in English
PDF in French
PDF in Spanish

For a further explanation of how to use the Events Standard Formats, check out this webinar below and read the summary: