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The website of the German Institute for Human Rights was developed according to the valid standards for websites. As far as possible we considered and followed these standards:

  • Terms of the German "Barrierefreie Informationstechnik-Verordnung" (BITV)
    The content was implemented according to the guidelines of the W3C for web content accessibility.
  • Valid CSS:
    For the implementation we used only valid CSS.
  • Valid HTML code.

This website supports graphic output equipment like special browser as well as other assistive technologies like screen reader or speech output browser.

The forum is not barrier-free.

If you should yet hit on barriers on our website please send us an e-mail with a description where you hit on which barrier:

e-mail: scheffer(at)

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Browser compatibility

This website can be viewed in an optimal way with the current standard browsers. If you use an older browser variations of display are possible.

You can download current versions of different browsers from the websites of the producers:

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Our website is fully functional without activated cookies.

Data charts

All charts on this site are exclusively used for the depiction of tabular data. The attribution of row and column headers follows the common standards for barrier-free websites. Assisting programs are therefore capable of assigning the data cells to the respective captions.

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Printing function

The printing function allows the print of a site’s content in DIN A4 size without the menu bar, any headers and the marginal column appearing on the hard copy. You will find the printing function at the bottom of every site.

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Use of JavaScript

We don’t use JavaScript

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Flexible layout

This web presence has a flexible design and is adjusting itself to the size of the browser window. The design is optimized for a resolution of 1024 x 786 pixels.

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Navigation options

You can browse this website with different means:

  • You may use the menu bar on the home page.
  • You can find a linked overview of all available topics and categories in the sitemap.
  • You may use the full-text search to find the favoured document.

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Keyboard navigation

You can use this website also with your keyboard only. Most browsers allow to leap through all available links with the tabulator.

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pdf files

pdf files are marked with an icon. You will also find the title of the document, information on file size and accessibility. 

Click "download" to open the document. 

To open the pdf files you need a pdf reader. You can download this program free of charge on the following page:

Download Adobe Reader

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Barrier-free pdf files

We have set us the goal to make all new pdf files available in barrier-free form. That means that they can be read out by screen readers. Already existing pdf files will not be revised and are not barrier-free. Similarly pdfs from other providers which we link, are often not accessible.

If you need content from non-accessible pdf files in an accessible form, please send us an e-mail to the following address:

e-mail: presse(at)

We will try to provide you with the content in the desired way.

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Size of font

To change the font size, keep the Strg key pressed und move the scroll wheel on the mouse.

You can also change the font size through your browser options.

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Change of language

All non-English words on our website are tagged. This helps reading programs to choose the correct pronunciation.

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You will find the full-text search above the menu bar.

Search tips

  • Umlauts (ö, ä, ü) are recognized.
  • Use the ~ character at the end of a word to start a fuzzy search.
  • Use the + character to include a specific term in the search result.
  • Use synonyms and word variations during a repeated search.
  • se the detailed search to narrow down your result precisely.

Searching a word necessarily

A specific term you are looking for has to be part of the text. Include a + before the term. Take care that there’s no space character between the word and the +: +Rudolf.

Excluding a word

The search result shall not include a specific term. Use a – to exclude the term:
+Rudolf +lecture -Geneva = You are searching for lecture held by Ms. Rudolf not in Geneva.

Searching for a word that does not necessarily have to be part of the result

If you use neither + nor – you can do a facultative search:
Rudolf +lecture = Rudolf does not need to be included, lecture has to be included.

Searching for a related group of words

Enter the phrase or name with quotation marks:
"Prof. Dr. Beate Rudolf".

Searching for variants of a term

Use the * at the end of a term: human* = searches for humanly, humane, humaneness etc. (You have to enter at least three letters prior to the * .)

Searching for terms where the precise spelling is unclear

Add a ~ directly to the term and similar words are searched: Rudol~ also finds "Rudolf".

Basic search

Use the basic search, ...

  • if you need your search result very quick;
  • if you have a very precise term you are looking for (otherwise the hit rate will be to high);
  • if you do not enter more than two or three items to narrow down your result.

In basic search you can work with the logical operators AND, OR, NOT, + or – (also see search tips).

Detailed search

Detailed search helps you...

  • to narrow down your result precisely;
  • to sort the hit list according to certain criteria;
  • to search for multiple terms with different weightings.

New search

New search means that previous entries are reset and that you can search for new terms and new attributes (+, -).

Refining the list

You have already looked for three terms with the detailed search, but you want to narrow down it even further. The "refining the list" function allows you to enter three additional search terms and filter the existing results with them.


  • Weighting describes the frequency with which the terms appear in the document. The summary shows the result of the weighting in percent.
  • The date tells you when the document was published.


pdf files are searched as well.

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Ingrid Scheffer
Online Editor
Phone: +49 30 25 93 59 - 52
e-mail: scheffer(at)