Professor Dr. Barbara Oomen is the project leader of the Cities of Refuge project. She is a professor in the Sociology of Human Rights at Utrecht University, and teaches at University College Roosevelt. UCR is the UU Liberal Arts and Sciences Honours College in Middelburg, where the Cities of Refuge research is based. Barbara Oomen has a long-standing interest in the way in which rights acquire meaning in a given setting, and the interplay between human rights and culture in a given context.
She wrote books like Rights for Others: the slow home-coming of human rights in the Netherlands (Cambridge University Press 2014) and Global Urban Justice: the rise of human rights cities (CUP 2016, together with M. Davis and M. Grigolo), and a great number of articles on this topic. She led a research project specifically on human rights cities from 2012 onwards, taught a research seminar on human rights cities and gave lectures on the topic all over the world. Prof. Oomen sits on a number of advisory boards like the Netherlands Helsinki Committee and the Freedom Lectures, and on editorial boards like that of the Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights.