Labor Standards in International Supply Chains

Labor Standards in International Supply Chains

Aligning Rights and Incentives

Daniel Berliner, Anne Regan Greenleaf, Milli Lake, Margaret Levi and Jennifer Noveck

Labor Standards in International Supply Chains examines developments in working conditions over the past thirty years. The authors analyze the stakeholders and mechanisms that create challenges and opportunities for improving labor rights around the world, in sectors including apparel, footwear and electronics. Extended examples from China, Honduras, Bangladesh and the United States, as well as new quantitative evidence, illustrate the complex dynamics within and among key groups, including brands, suppliers, governments, workers and consumers.

Chapter 3: Aligning interests across global supply chains: an analytic framework

Daniel Berliner, Anne Regan Greenleaf, Milli Lake, Margaret Levi and Jennifer Noveck

Subjects: politics and public policy, human rights, international politics, social policy and sociology, labour policy


Chapter 3 asks the question under what conditions should we expect labor rights in global supply chains to improve? How do we make analytic sense of the complex universe of actors and interests involved in global supply chains, as well as their governance and the multitude of relationships and modes of influence among them? What forms of social pressure do we expect to lead to changes in behavior, and under what circumstances? Chapter 3 presents the answers to these complex questions using an analytic framework focusing on four clusters of actors, their incentives and beliefs, and the changing patterns of interest alignment and misalignment among them. The four key clusters of actors, defined by their relationship to the process of production are supply chain workers and their allies, governments, businesses, and end consumers. Each of these clusters in turn comprises myriad types of actors in different geographic locales and structural positions in the supply chain.

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