Rare minerals are key ingredients of industrial production. Their extraction is finite, but the demand for them rises constantly. The provision of rare minerals are high on the political agenda of the European Union and Austria. However, the extraction of such minerals is often connected with massive negative social and environmental consequences. The report "More Human Rights in the Rare Minerals Supply Chain" analyses several mechanisms of human rights protection in minerals extraction.
Human Rights and Business
The Autum Conference of the Austrian Commission of Jurists 2017 will take place on the 20th - 22nd of October. The topic of the conference is Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development in our globalised economy. Karin Lukas of the Ludwig Boltzman Insitute of Human Rights will be joining as one of the speakers. Her talk: "Corporate Accountability for Human Rights Violations and the Access to Effective Legal Remedies" will be held on the 21st of October 2017.
The Institute for Managing Sustainability is pleased to invite you to join the Global Value final conference on 12 – 14 June 2017. This virtual conference will launch the outcomes of three years of research on corporate impact measurement & management carried out in the context of the EU funded project Global Value. During the conference a new online toolkit for measuring and managing business impacts will officially be released.
Julia Planitzer published an article on obligatory reporting and transparency in supply chains in the new VIDC's newsletter 'Spotlight'. In her article (in German, available here) she discusses whether enhanced transparency by obligatory reporting can prevent labour exploitation in supply chains.
Karin Lukas, Vice-President of the European Committee of Social Rights, held a presentation on 8 March 2017 at the European Parliament. She discussed the protection of social rights in the EU and by the Social Charter and identified possible tensions. As an example, she talked about austerity measures in Greece and their impact on social rights. Watch now the video of the full panel discussion. Karin Lukas' presentation starts at 2:08.
Economic, social and cultural rights have gained considerable attention in recent years, both on the global and the European level. The significant developments of the last decade, for example the impacts of the global economic crisis, have given way to new challenges regarding the implementation of economic, social and cultural rights. Also in this context, the implementation of these rights faces huge obstacles.
The EU-funded research project 'Human Rights in Business' explored judicial and non-judicial remedies within the EU to hold companies domiciled in a Member State liable for human rights violations for which they or their subcontractors are responsible, wherever the damage might have occurred. The project team formulated answers to the question how parties concerned by human rights violations, may they directly or indirectly be caused by corporate actions, are able to receive judicial remedy and compensation.
How can victims of a fatal fire in a textile factory in Pakistan claim compensation from the main client of the textile factory, a huge clothing discounter in Germany? Are there alternatives to going to court? To which extent can companies be held liable for exploitation of workers? BIM’s Social Justice-Team works on these questions. Joining different expertise in the Social Justice-Team led to several recent research outcomes, which we are happy to present to you.