Ostwind Institut

This is to inform you of a new publication in the context of the research project on “Human Rights, Corporate Responsibility and Sustainable Development”. This project is funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and conducted at the Institute for Development and Peace (INEF) at the University of Duisburg-Essen.

Musiolek, Bettina:

Geschlechtergerechtigkeit und freiwillige Instrumente der Unternehmensverantwortung in globalen Produktionsnetzwerken und Lieferketten.

Abstract:

This paper asks whether voluntary instruments of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strengthen gender equality in global production networks and supply chains. It includes insights from the garment, electronics, toy, and agricultural sector. The paper starts by differentiating CSR instruments focusing on relevant actors and their interests. It emphasises the importance of integrating new actors in the discourse on labor, women’s and human rights. Against this background the paper argues that multistakeholder organizations can significantly contribute to a positive impact of CSR instruments. The author then identifies the most critical areas for gender equality in the workplace within global supply chains and assesses how far code systems and implementation documents include these areas by defining norms and offering practical guidance. The paper also analyses existing impact assessments in relation to the critical areas of gender equality at work. The analysis shows that gender equality is under-represented among the already limited impact of code implementation. The paper then looks at reasons and ways to change this situation. It particularly stresses the need for a labour rights oriented approach to code implementation and to governance in supply chains. Finally, it points out that sustainable change for workers and sustainable effects of CSR instruments – particularly in the field of gender equality – will not be achieved unless states and governments systematically complement these through effectively protecting workers’ rights.

For further information please visit

http://www.humanrights-business.org

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