A Great Source of Information, Inspiration and Motivation
The UN Forum on Business and Human Rights in Geneva took place during 16-18 November 2015. It was my first time and, to be honest, I did not expect the forum to provide me with life-changing information: I am not an academic in the field and just started working for the German network of fair trade and alternative trading organisations. They run a campaign for a strong national action plan on business and human rights. The organisation does, however, not have the resources to pro-actively participate in the Business & Human Rights movement on the global scale. (more…)
Welcome dear Reader!
With our first contribution, Sofia and I wish to explain some of the reasons which motivate us to start this blog.
I came to human rights not as an activist, but chose to study International Human Rights Law. Therefore, my first motivation for the blog is to create a platform for debating Business and Human Rights issues from both theoretical and practical angles. Thereby, my focus lies on ascertaining how and where the law can indeed improve people’s lives. For instance, in 2014 civil society organisations successfully lobbied States at the United Nations Human Rights Council to establish an inter-governmental working group which is going to elaborate a legally binding treaty on the human rights responsibilities of transnational and other corporations this year. Already the lobbying for such a treaty was contentious. Critics include Dr. Michael Addo who is member of the Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises since 2011. He feared non-governmental organisations would push too far by demanding that the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights would be implemented as binding international treaty. Assessing the practical value of this treaty to improve people’s lives is only possible if as many different people as possible – future and current academics, business and human rights practitioners and interested members of the public from different societies and countries – join the conversation.