PEN International © 2017
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Our Impact

Eskinder Nega

PEN International has been advocating for human rights since 1921, and our work has resulted in positive changes on human rights issues across the globe since then. The solidarity provided by our international network is repeatedly reported by persecuted writers and their families to be essential for maintaining the strength to continue writing and standing for their beliefs. Our End of Year Report and Executive Director Report demonstrate the areas of our impact, in addition to identifying some of our main challenges. Recently, we have celebrated:

  • Increased visibility, for both PEN International and PEN Centres at local and international levels.
  • Widely reported solidarity work, which is believed to be having a positive impact.
  • Improvements in the situations of persecuted writers, through our protection work and campaigning for writers at risk.
  • An increase in skills and capacity of targeted PEN Centres in the global south.
  • 80% of the writers who reached out to us in 2017, reported that they felt supported by our solidarity work.
  • The creation of diverse spaces for language, debate, literature, dialogue, ideas and opinions, that have strengthened the voices of participants, through our Civil Society Programme.
  • The launch of Make Space Campaign
  • The decriminalization of defamation in Africa, where several states have pledged to repeal these structural threats.
  • The launch of Women’s Manifesto, a set of principles, which aim to protect free expression for women.

Good news sorted by region:



Europe and Central Asia  

Middle East and North Africa

The Americas