Business action [clear filter]
Tuesday, November 27

10:15am CET

Snapshot: How can business association promote human rights due diligence. Experiences from Japan

Brief description of the presentation :
The presentation will introduce how Keidanren, one of the main business organizations in Japan, plays an active role in leading Japanese corporations to respect human rights as well as to promote human rights due diligence (HRDD) in accordance with the UN Guiding Principle on Business and Human Rights.

Presentation objectives:
To explain Keidanren's Charter of Corporate Behavior and the concept of "Society 5.0 for SDGs".
The presentation will also share some data on how Japanese companies respect human rights and promote HRDD in their business.


Tomoko Hasegawa

Director, SDGs Promotion Bureau, Keidanren (Japan Business Federation)

Tuesday November 27, 2018 10:15am - 10:30am CET

1:30pm CET

Reinforcing the importance of human rights due diligence for realizing the SDGs
Organized by Shift, Business and Human Rights Resource Centre (BHRRC), Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR), Oxfam

Brief description of the session and objectives:
The overall purpose of this event is to deepen our understanding of the relationship between the SDGs and the business and human rights agenda from the viewpoint of various stakeholders. More specifically, our objectives are:
  • To discuss the evolving relationship between the SDGs and business and human rights from the perspective of business, civil society, government, and other stakeholders.
  • To identify key barriers (cultural, institutional, etc.) that prevent greater integration of human rights considerations and approaches into companies’ engagement on the SDGs.
  • To develop strategies for how to better ensure that respect for human rights is at the center of every company’s efforts toward contributing to the Global Goals.
Key discussion questions:
  1. What are the major trends, areas of progress, and gaps in corporate strategies and actions on the SDGs?
  2. What are the main barriers that are holding back deeper synergy between the SDGs and the business and human rights agenda?
  3. What can business, civil society, governments, investors, and other actors do to help make elements of the business and human rights agenda (e.g. ‘Respect, Protect, Access to Remedy,’ human rights due diligence) a cornerstone of companies’ SDG engagement?
Format of the session:
To encourage multi-stakeholder dialogue, we propose a workshop-style session to crowdsource input into the discussion questions outlined above. Following a set of scene-setting presentations, small group discussions will offer an opportunity for participants to add to the conversation, and the plenary discussion at the end will capture key takeaways and opportunities for further collaboration.

Setting the scene: The state of play on business, the SDGs, and human rights (35 min) 

Small group discussions (20 min)
In groups up to 20 people, the following questions will be discussed:
  • What examples of good practice are we seeing in positioning human rights at the heart of SDG engagement?
  • What are the barriers in ensuring an integrated approach to business respect for human rights and contributions to the SDGs?
  • What can we do, individually and collectively, to tackle these barriers?
Plenary discussion and wrap-up (20 min) 
  • Report back from small group discussions by table leads
  • Collating feedback and facilitated discussion of emergent themes and findings
  • Group Discussion and plenary moderated by Phil Bloomer, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre 

Background to the discussion:
Three years since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) continue to gain momentum within the business community. More than 90% of the SDG targets are linked to international human rights and labor standards. Ensuring respect for human rights – an inherently creative and innovative process – is thus one of the most important contributions to the SDGs that businesses can make. In addressing negative human rights impacts connected to business activity, companies that take this approach will be delivering hugely positive outcomes for people.
Yet, few companies are linking their SDG engagement with their commitment to human rights. While the number of companies embracing the SDGs and making commitments to respecting human rights continues to grow, many of them are treating the SDGs and human rights as separate areas of engagement. As a result, there is a risk that company strategies and actions on the SDGs do not meaningfully address human rights impacts associated with corporate operations and supply chains.
The lack of knowledge regarding business’ SDG contributions and the relationship between the SDGs and the business and human rights agenda represents a problem for all stakeholder groups. A new debate is urgently needed if we want to ensure that human rights form the cornerstone of any business strategy or action aimed at contributing to the Global Goals.
 Interpretation is provided in Korean.

avatar for Phil Bloomer

Phil Bloomer

Executive Director, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
Phil Bloomer is Executive Director of Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, a digital action platform that empowers human rights advocates in civil society, business, and government.The website attracts 4 million visits each year; tracks the human rights performance of over 9,000... Read More →
avatar for James Gomme

James Gomme

Director, Sustainable Development Goals, World Business Council for Sustainable Development
James Gomme is Director of Sustainable Development Goals at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), a business membership organization comprised of some 200 multinational corporations that come together to coordinate and scale up solutions to create a sustainable... Read More →
avatar for Cynthia Trigo Paz

Cynthia Trigo Paz

Human Rights Senior Advisor, TOTAL
As a social and human rights expert I advise Total on assessing and addressing human rights risks and impacts associated to its operations and business relations.
avatar for Claus Teilmann Petersen

Claus Teilmann Petersen

Department Director, Human Rights and Business, Danish Institute for Human Rights
Claus Teilmann Petersen is Department Director at DIHR’s Human Rights and Business Department overseeing the Corporate Engagement and Business & Accountability programs. Claus is seated in United Nations Global Compact’s “Advisory Network of Experts” and an interim position... Read More →
avatar for Irit Tamir

Irit Tamir

Director, Private Sector Department, Oxfam

Tuesday November 27, 2018 1:30pm - 2:45pm CET
Room XXI

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