The Indigenous Navigator is a set of tools for and by indigenous peoples to systematically gather their own data and use it for multiple purposes. It is a community-based framework for monitoring and guiding indigenous peoples’ rights and development.

The Indigenous Navigator monitors:

The Indigenous Navigator offers a range of free tools and resources for indigenous communities.

Why monitoring?

The Indigenous Navigator can serve a number of purposes:

  • Raise awareness about indigenous peoples’ rights and contribute to their empowerment and ability to claim their rights
  • Guide and orient indigenous peoples’ self-determined governance and development strategies
  • Hold States accountable by evidencing their compliance with – or failure to meet – human rights obligations
  • Guide and orient States’ and donors’ policies and development programs, including those designed to meet the Sustainable Development Goals.


Measuring indigenous peoples’ rights

The Indigenous Navigator is solidly anchored in the provisions of UNDRIP.It monitors them thematically, as you can see below:


overarching principles

The monitoring machine

By documenting and reporting violations to international, regional and national human rights bodies and mechanisms, monitoring enhances indigenous peoples’ access to justice and strengthens their ability to hold States accountable.


The monitoring machine


UNDRIP does not create new or special rights or privileges for indigenous peoples but is a reflection of universal human rights as they are relevant to indigenous peoples. This means, that UNDRIP is complementary to – and under-pinned by – the full range of human rights instruments, including International Labour Organization (ILO) Conventions.

This “mirror effect” between UNDRIP and other instruments imply that monitoring the implementation of UNDRIP also means monitoring the implementation of a large number of other human rights instruments.



A tool that links the UNDRIP to other human rights instruments

The Indigenous Navigator comprises a Comparative Matrix, which illustrates how the provisions of UNDRIP directly link to other human rights instruments:


The Indigenous Navigator comprises a broad catalog of indicators to assess implementation. They monitor different aspects of the States’ duty to respect, protect and fulfill indigenous peoples’ human rights, and comprise structural, process and outcome indicators:

  • Structural indicators reflect the legal and policy framework of a given country
  • Process indicators measure the states' ongoing efforts to implement human rights commitments through programs, budget allocations, etc.
  • Outcome indicators capture the actual enjoyment of human rights by indigenous peoples. 

Some of these indicators also monitor the outcomes of the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Monitoring tools

The Indigenous Navigator offers a set of user-friendly questionnaires. This includes a national and community survey, which are designed to be complementary.

The national questionnaires assess the level of recognition and implementation of UNDRIP by States in a particular country. These questionnaires particularly look at laws, policies, and programs. Methodologically, the national questionnaires are designed for desk research by indigenous experts and organizations.

The community questionnaires assess the implementation of UNDRIP on the ground, mainly looking at practical outcomes for particular indigenous communities.They are designed for collective assessments on the ground, for example through community meetings, focus group discussions, and participatory research.

The questionnaires come in a long and a short version. By calculating the values of the responses to the short questionnaires, you can quickly assess the situation of your country or your community through the so-called IP Community-Index, and the IP National-Index.

The IP National-Index measures 10 essential domains of UNDRIP.


Calculating Index values

By assigning a numerical value from 0 to 10 to the responses, the data for each country or community can easily be computed, presented graphically and compared, across countries and communities.

For example, if an indigenous language is “safe”, i.e. spoken by all generations with an uninterrupted intergenerational transmission, it will be scored with 10 points. If a language is extinct, it will be scored with 0 points.

The Indigenous Navigator can, for example, illustrate implementation gaps by contrasting differences between recognition in national laws and community perceptions.