Diane Elson is a member of the Advisory Group for the UNRISD project Linking Social Protection and Human Rights. She has collaborated with UNRISD over a number of years. In 2012, she wrote a chapter "Social Reproduction in the Global Crisis: Rapid Recovery or Long-Lasting Depletion?" in the UNRISD/Palgrave volume The Global Crisis and Transformative Social Change.
Previously, she was part of the research team for the project Gender Justice, Development and Rights (2000-2002), for which she wrote a paper Social Policy and Macroeconomic Performance: Integrating the Economic and the Social. Elson is a member of the UN Committee for Development Policy and Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Essex, UK. Previously, she worked for the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) and for Manchester University where she was Professor of Development Studies.
Her research interests are in global social change and the realisation of human rights with a particular focus on gender inequality. A chapter on her work is included in Fifty Key Thinkers on Development (edited by D. Simon, and published by Routledge in 2006). She edited Male Bias in the Development Process (1995); co-edited Special Issues of World Development on Gender, Adjustment and Macroeconomics (1995); Growth, Trade, Finance and Gender Inequality (2000) and the UNIFEM Report on Progress of the World's Women (2000).
Her selected publications include:
- (ed. with R. Balakrishnan) Economic Policy and Human Rights Obligations, Zed Press, London, 2012
- (ed. with S. Fukuda-Parr and P. Vizard) Human Rights and the Capabilities Approach. An Interdisciplinary Dialogue, Routledge, London, 2012.
- (with R. Balakrishnan and J. Heintz), 'Public Finance, Maximum Available Resources and Human Rights' in C.Harvey, A.Nolan and R. O'Connell ( eds) Human Rights and Public Finance: Budget Analysis and the Advancement of Economic and Social Rights, Hart Publishing, Oxford, 2013.
- (with H. Reed and S. Himmelweit, ‘An Adequate Standard of Living: A Child Rights Based Quantitative Analysis of Budgetary Decisions 2010-13’, Office of the Children’s Commissioner, London, 2013.