Hallway Talks with Advocacy Campaign Expert Liba Beyer

By Rhea Almeida and Luisa Portugal

Liba Beyer, director of Human Rights Watch Global Campaigns and NYU Wagner alum, discusses the importance of communicating human rights to produce social change. She shares her strategies to garner attention in over-crowded digital spaces, and the skills needed to make an impact. She also analyzes the current rhetoric around various human rights issues, including the death penalty and voting restorations.

Beyer runs the Persuasion Lab at Human Rights Watch, and explains the mission of this lab is to “figure out the tactics and tools that will move hearts and minds on human rights values to evaluate impacts in communications and audience growth/brand lift.” Finally, she describes her vision of an ideal advocacy campaign.

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[00:00] Welcome from Rhea Almeida and Luisa Portugal,

[01:30] Liba Beyer begins a discussion on human rights and social change.

Guest Speaker

Liba Beyer joined Human Rights Watch in 2002 and has made significant impact in her many roles including expanding the Human Rights Watch Council by opening both the Chicago and Toronto offices. Liba currently leads the Public Advocacy, where she engages donors and public constituents in high level global advocacy campaigns and serves as the liaison between supporters in thirty two cities with the programmatic work and advocacy priorities of the organization. Liba has helped produce hundreds of international special events, donor trips and multi-polar advocacy campaigns. Liba received an MPA from NYU Wagner under a fully sponsored Jewish leader fellowship.


Rhea Almeida is second-year MPA international student at NYU Wagner hailing from Mumbai, India. In the past, she has worked in the fields of policy, advocacy, and development for a women’s working rights group in India. Prior to that, she worked as a TV news journalist in New Delhi. Her areas of interest include workers’ rights, gender equality, grassroot level advocacy and coronavirus response policy. In addition to being contributing editor for The Wagner Review, she serves as senator for the Wagner Student Association, and events chair for the Wagner Policy Alliance. She is also the co-founder of the ‘What’s up with Coronavirus Policy’ discussion group.

Luisa Portugal is a second-year MPA student at NYU Wagner specializing in International Development Management & Policy. She earned an LLM in Constitutional Law and Theory in Brazil. Her main topics of interest are international development, climate change and the coronavirus crisis. Luisa will serve as Co-Chair of Events for the Alliance for Climate Change and Environment (ACE) in the upcoming year. She is also the co-founder of the ‘What’s up with Coronavirus Policy’ discussion group.

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Music credit: Deadly Roulette Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com). Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0; License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ Feature image credit: Photo by Cia Pak / U.N.