Research Handbook on Directors’ Duties

Research Handbook on Directors’ Duties

Research Handbooks in Corporate Law and Governance series

Edited by Adolfo Paolini

Directors’ duties and liabilities have become the centre of a general legal discussion following the 2008 financial scandal that resulted in global recession. Questions have arisen regarding the ways in which the directors of the world’s major financial institutions have handled their duties and how their decisions have impacted investors, shareholders and consumers. This detailed Handbook discusses the nature of the relationship between a company and its directors, assessing issues such as how duties are discharged, liabilities that may arise and what interests directors should consider before embarking on commercial ventures.

Chapter 8: The limits of directors’ duties in fostering corporate social responsibility and the idea of a multi-stakeholder board

S.H. Goo and Désirée Klingler

Subjects: law - academic, company and insolvency law, comparative law, corporate law and governance

Extract

Every day numerous human rights abuses are committed by thousands of corporations around the globe. They happen in both developing and developed countries. Recent examples are the Foxconn suicides in Shenzhen or the BP Oil spill in the U.S. The abuses that companies are involved or implicated in range from denials of freedom of expression or association, unfair trials, abductions, arbitrary detentions, violence, rape and sexual abuses, torture and ill-treatment, deaths and genocide, to all forms of discrimination, harm to the environment and health and safety issues. These abuses happen practically all over the world; in many sectors of the economy: agriculture, food, tobacco, apparel and textiles, commercial sex and pornography, finance, health, media, manufacturing, chemicals, metals, plastics and basic materials, weapons, security equipment, and technology. The global financial turmoil of 2008 triggered by the subprime mortgage crisis, which led to a series of financial institutions’ failures and debts crises, has also had its impact on companies.

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