This BHR course should be of interest to (i) law, business or management students having an interest in BHR or corporate social responsibility (CSR); (ii) academics or lawyers interested in developing specialisation in the BHR field; and (iii) civil society representatives, business executives, policy makers, and government officials aspiring to learn more about international and comparative developments in the fields of BHR and CSR. Upon a successful completion of the course, a certificate will be issued by the ILI.
The course aims to expose law/business/management students, lawyers, civil society representatives, policy makers, corporate executives and government officials to international and comparative perspectives in the field of BHR. After completing this one-week intensive course, participants should be able to have an informed understanding about:
The nature and extent of the human rights responsibilities of business enterprises;
How business enterprises should and could discharge their human rights responsibilities (including in their supply chains) and resolve dilemmas in their day-to-day business operations;
The current regulatory interplay in the area of BHR at corporate, domestic, regional and international levels; and
Various remedial tools available to victims to hold business enterprises accountable for human rights abuses, the barriers that affected communities experience in seeking access to remedy against businesses, and potential means to overcome such barriers.
Teaching and learning
The course will be conducted in the form of 35 hours of interactive seminars (three seminars each day from Monday to Friday). The seminars will draw heavily on comparative and international perspectives. In addition to focusing on theoretical underpinnings, special attention will be given to practical dimensions of BHR issues using selected case studies. Students will be expected to read beforehand the prescribed reading materials and actively participate in class activities such as hypothetical scenarios and role plays.
The course will be taught, on a pro bono basis, by a team of leading scholars and practitioners (see the faculty bios for their profile).
The course will cover the topics such as the following:
Setting the context: Understanding business and human rights and why companies should have human rights responsibilities and obligations
Evolution of BHR and its relationship with CSR and others such concepts; BHR and sustainable development goals (SDGs)
Role of investors and consumers in promoting responsible business
Development trajectory of BHR/CSR in India
Understanding the Gender dimension of BHR
Extent of corporate human rights responsibilities, including for abuses within global supply chains
Innovative tools to protect business respect for human rights, e.g., non-financial reporting, mandatory human rights due diligence, ranking/benchmarking of corporate performance
Introduction and critical review of selective regulatory initiatives: corporate codes; UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights; OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises; ILO Tripartite Declaration of Principles concerning Multinational Enterprises; proposed binding international instrument
Potential avenues for seeking remedies: tort litigation (e.g., the direct duty of care), National Contact Point (NCP) complaint system
Role of civil societies and human rights defenders
Linkages: Trade, investment and human rights and Technology, business and human rights
Protecting labour rights in global supply chains; Modern slavery legislation in the UK and Australia
Click Here to See Course Faculty Profiles
Students will be provided a recommended list of reading materials for each seminar. They should also self-explore the relevant materials available at the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre’s website: http://business-humanrights.org/en
The assessment will comprise of class participation in various learning activities during seminars.