Indigenous Peoples’ Rights in Constitutions Assessment Tool (IPCAT)

A constitution articulates a vision that reflects a state’s values and history, as well as its aspirational objectives for the future. As the supreme law of a state, the constitution defines its structure and institutions, distributes political power, and recognizes and protects fundamental rights, critically determining the relationship between citizens and governments.

Embedding in a constitution recognition of and rights-based protections for specific groups, such as indigenous peoples, can give these groups and their rights enhanced protection. This can be furthered by providing for specialized institutions and processes to deepen the realization of those rights in practice.

The Indigenous Peoples’ Rights in Constitutions Assessment Tool helps users to analyse a constitution from the perspective of indigenous peoples’ rights. Using a series of questions, short explanations and example provisions from constitutions around the world, the Assessment Tool guides its users through the text of a constitution and allows for systematic analysis of the language and provisions of a constitutional text to assess how robustly indigenous peoples’ rights are reflected in it.

The IPACT is available in English, Spanish, and Filipino. It can be downloaded and used directly by individuals or groups, but is best utilized in a facilitated discussion setting where it can be used as a springboard for discussion.

For more information on how to conduct a IPCAT training contact International IDEA.