A Very Short Introduction to… Human Rights Due Diligence

By Theresa

Human rights due diligence (HRDD for fans) is the core instrument to fulfil the corporate responsibility to respect human rights. This responsibility is stipulated in Pillar II of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). This post gives you a short introduction with some signposts for detailed information at the end.



Happy Birthday to the UNGPs – Happy Anniversary to Us All!

Celebrating the 5-year anniversary of the current global framework to render states and companies responsible

By Theresa


On November 5th, 2015, Brazilians have been victims of the worst environmental crime in the country’s history with the collapse of the mining dam operated by Vale/Samarco/BHP. Photo courtesy of the Treaty Alliance initiative

The 5-year anniversary of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) took place on Thursday, 16 June 2016. Anniversaries on the level of the United Nations usually give rise to self-congratulating speeches by politicians and press releases listing demands from civil society organisations. Anniversaries also come very handy for drawing attention to a topic among those who do not yet know about it. This is what this post sets out to do: after a brief introduction to the UNGPs, we benefit from a speech by David Pitt-Watson to ascertain why the potential impact of the UNGPs is so great. The post concludes with an overview over challenges and achievements of the UNGPs during the last 5 years. (more…)

Movies that educate: Promised Land

A short subjective review of a good film Promised Land (2012, production by Participant Media and Image Nation Abu Dhabi) 

by Sofia


© IMDb

Sometimes back in 1896 Leo Tolstoy wrote to his acquaintance Aleksandra Kalmikova – a Russian progressive social activist, supporter of women’s education –  that power of the authorities is based on ignorance of people, and the authorities know that and that is why they will always fight against enlightenment.[1]  Knowledge is what should also guide us through this post and thus save us from manipulations.

In 2012 “Promised Land” appeared on screens.  It’s a film about an energy company representative, Steve, arriving in a small American town to persuade the locals to sell their lands and get rich overnight, since they have lots of money hidden under their feet – natural gas. Steve  is quite experienced in these matters, but he makes a flaw right from the start (more…)