Conference Programme Now Available: ‘Rethinking Limited Liability in Light of the Universality of Human Rights’

The Final Programme of the Annual Workshop to be held by the IG on International Business and Human Rights at the ESIL Conference in Manchester is now available. The theme of this year’s Workshop is ‘Rethinking Limited Liability in Light of the Universality of Human Rights’. We look forward to seeing you in Manchester!


Conference: “The 1st NAP on Business and Human Rights. Assessment, Follow-up and Review”

Between June 14th – 15th, the University of Seville will organise a conference titled “The 1st NAP on Business and Human Rights. Assessment, Follow-up and Review”

More information about the this conference can be found here:

Human Rights International Corner (HRIC), Unione Forense per la Tutela dei Diritti Umani (FIDH) and Peacelink publish report titled “The Environmental Disaster and Human Rights Violations of ILVA Steel Plant in Italy”

The ILVA plant in Taranto, inaugurated in 1964, is the largest steel plant in Europe and one of the largest in the world, today employing about 11,000 employees. In all these years of activity, ILVA has had a heavy impact on the environment and the health of the population of Taranto, as well as that of its employees.

The report underlines that serious violations committed by the company in the decades in which it has operated under private management have been widely documented and known to the authorities since at least the 1990s, and that the Italian State has negligently delayed the adoption of preventive and precautionary measures to limit the risks deriving from exposure to polluting emissions. This negligence is in violation of the State duty to protect human rights imposed by international and European law. Moreover, there have been few and ineffective sanctions imposed in response to the conduct of the company and its managers. This is in spite of Italy’s adoption in 2016 of a National Action Plan for the implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Businesses and Human Rights.

As the Italian Constitutional Court also stated in its ruling filed on Friday 23 March 2018, “the legislator has over-emphasized the interest in the continuation of productive activity, completely neglecting the requirements of inviolable constitutional rights related to health protection and of life itself (articles 2 and 32 of the Constitution), which must be considered inextricably linked to the right to work in a safe and non-dangerous environment (Article 4 and 35 of the Constitution).”

It is therefore the duty of the Italian government to protect and respect human rights and in particular the right to life, to health and to live in a healthy environment, as enshrined in international law, in the context of violations perpetrated by companies, and therefore to adopt without delay all the necessary measures to limit environmental damage related to ILVA’s production activities and to prevent further damage in the interests of the population of Taranto.

The case of ILVA thus illustrates the need to improve the implementation of existing international, regional and national standards and legislations protecting human rights from corporate abuses. It also demonstrates that it is crucial to move forward with the negotiation and adoption of an international binding instrument that regulates companies’ behavior towards human rights. A link to the full text of the report can be found here.


IG Annual Workshop and Call for Papers: “Rethinking Limited Liability in Light of the Universality of Human Rights” – University of Manchester, 13th September 2018

The IG on International Business and Human Rights would like to invite all of its members and other interested parties to attend the Annual Workshop that will be held on 13th of September 2018 at the University of Manchester. The Workshop is part of the Annual Conference organized by the European Society of International Law (ESIL). This year, the theme of ESIL’s Annual Conference is “International Law and Universality” and in this context, the Workshop organized by the IG and titled “Rethinking Limited Liability in Light of the Universality of Human Rights”, invites its participants to take a fresh view at how normative, institutional and organisational practices have shaped the concept of corporate limited liability. More information about the Workshop and the Call for Papers can be found here.

We very much look forward to meeting you in Manchester!

1st edition Summer School on ‘Business & Human Rights’, Pisa 18-22 June 2018

The 1st edition of the Summer School on Business and Human Rights – co-organized by some members of this IG, namely Angelica Bonfanti (Department of Law of the University of Milan), Marta Bordignon (Human Rights International Corner –HRIC), Chiara Macchi (Institute DIRPOLIS of the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies), and Marco Fasciglione, (National Research Council of Italy – CNR-IRISS) – will take place in Pisa from 18 to 22 June 2018 at Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies.

The course will be entirely in English and is finalized at providing students, researchers, lawyers, NGOs and CSOs representatives, as well as CRS specialists, private and public sector practitioners with a comprehensive overview and knowledge of the topic.

The flyer, the programme and the call for applications are available online.

Follow-up of IG Informal Meeting – Geneva, 26 November 2017

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The PPTs of some of the presentations given during the Informal Meeting “DISCUSSING THE EMERGING RESEARCH TRENDS IN THE FIELD OF BUSINESS AND HUMAN RIGHTS” that took place in Geneva on November 26, 2017 are now available, together with some picture of the event.

Lene Wendland, Chief, Human Rights and Economic and Social Issues Section, OHCHR: BHR meeting_Geneva_Wendland

A. Timofeyeva, Charles University, Prague: BHR meeting_Geneva_Tymofeyeva

Frauke Renz, University of Bern: BHR meeting_Geneva_Renz

Carlos Lopez, ICJ: BHR meeting_Geneva_Lopez


Winter Academy ‘Doing Business Right’ at T.M.C. Asser Instituut, The Hague

The T.M.C. Asser Instituut of The Hague has organized a Winter Academy titled ‘Doing Business Right’, that will take place on January 8-12, 2018, with the aim of providing a comprehensive overview of the legal mechanisms ensuring that multinational corporations act in the public interest.

The program and the list of the speakers, as well as additional information about the course, are provided here: Doing Business Right – Winter Academy

Deadline for registration is December 8, 2017.