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Call for papers panel: Responsible value chains and production networks: challenges and perspectives

One of the key global challenges of the twenty-first century is to understand how firms, from OECD and emerging economies, might better engage with questions of responsibility and social justice, thereby becoming more accountable. Heightened awareness of consumers, campaigns and direct action by NGOs and other civil society groups, and recent orientations in national and supranational policies are now pressuring firms to take responsibility for the environmental and social impact of all activities linked with their products, not just those undertaken in house. The increasing fragmentation of production and deepening of outsourcing and offshoring, poses significant challenges in terms of ensuring sustainable production and consumption systems.

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In the face of corporate impunity. Progress in Europe

France is preparing a bill relating to the duty of care incumbent upon parent and subcontracting companies, which is struggling to be definitively adopted. Yet this bill would finally make it possible to tackle the human rights violations and corruption taking place in French companies’ supply and production chains. This report by Forum Citoyen pour la Responsabilité Sociale des Entreprises, of which Collectif Éthique sur l'Étiquette is a member, shows that France is not the only European country working towards this objective. Here is an overview from October 2016 showing the various initiatives to curb corporate impunity across Europe.

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Promoting Decent Work in Global Supply Chains in Latin America and the Caribbean

Global supply chains (GSCs) have grown over the past three decades to become a large part of global trade, linking producers, suppliers and consumers worldwide. It is estimated that between 60 and 80 percent of global trade is currently conducted through GSCs (UNCTAD, 2013). The importance of GSCs and their implications for the economies of all countries, has been widely recognized and explored by different international agencies from their respective mandates, including the World Trade Organization (WTO), the United National Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the World Bank, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and even the G20. Yet, among these organizations, only the ILO has the ability, because of its mandate and governace structure, to examine the operation, impacts and implications of GSCs for the world of work from a tripartite perspective. And it is to do precisely this that the ILO constituents decided to have a General Discussion on “Decent work in global supply chains” in the 105th Session of the International Labour Conference in Geneva in June, 2016. The present study has been conducted by the Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), in collaboration with the Sectoral Policies Department (SECTOR) of the ILO, to increase understanding and provide an overview of key questions around the operation and impacts of GSCs in Latin America and the Caribbean and also as an input to the background document for the 2016 ILC General Discussion.

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Reflection on decent work in global supply chains on the agenda of the 105th session of the International Labour Conference

For the first time in its almost 100 year history, the ILO addressed the issue of decent work in global supply chains during its annual conference in Geneva. Although it is an achievement for the ILO to put the issue of global supply chains on the agenda in the face of huge business opposition, Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC) is disappointed about the outcome of the Commitee on Decent Work in Global Supply Chains. The conclusions could and should have much more forcefully defended workers’ rights in global supply chains. Adverse impacts on working conditions in the areas of occupational health and safety, wages and working me (§3) cannot be addressed adequately by cross-border social dialogue (§23c) only. Strong mechanisms that enable the right to collective bargaining at international level are necessary. CCC still believes that a global instrument is needed that is binding upon all parties. The fact that the conclusions pro- vide an opening to have a standard-setting procedure in the future justifies some optimism. 

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Announcing a New Policy Brief from the South Centre

Score of the Proposed International Leggaly Binding Instrument on Transnational Coporations and Other Business Enterprises with respect to Human Rights. The South Centre is pleased to announce the publication of Policy Brief No. 28 entitled "Scope of the Proposed International Legally Binding Instrument on Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with respect to Human Rights" by Carlos M. Correa, Special Advisor on Trade and Intellectual Property of the South Centre. 

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