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International Documents on Corporate Responsibility

Edited by Stephen Tully

International Documents on Corporate Responsibility includes the principal international, regional and national instruments drafted by intergovernmental organisations or states as well as codes of conduct formulated by industry associations, trade unions and non-governmental organisations. The coverage includes the fields of human rights, international criminal and environmental law, labour standards, international trade, armed conflict, sustainable development, corruption, consumer protection and corporate governance. Each document is accompanied by a brief explanatory commentary outlining the historical origins of the instrument, the principal actors involved, controversial negotiation issues, applicable implementation procedure, and identifies further reference material.
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Chapter 14: UN: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948


Commentary: As stated in its preamble, UNGA Resolution 217A (1948) is a ‘common standard of achievement for all’. See further UN, Fiftieth Anniversary of the UDHR, Basic Information Kit No 1, 1998. Regional human rights instruments include the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms 213 UNTS 222 (1950); the European Social Charter 529 UNTS 89 (1961); the American Convention on Human Rights (1969) 1144 UNTS 123; the Additional Protocol to the American Convention on Human Rights in the Area of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1988) OASTS 69; the African (Banjul) Charter on Human and People’s Rights 21 ILM 58 (1982); the Arab Charter on Human Rights 18 Human Rights Law Journal 151 (1997). From the OHCHR (2000), see, for example, ‘Business and Human Rights: A Progress Report’, Geneva. For business perspectives, see the Business Leaders Initiative on Human Rights, For joint business–NGO perspectives, see Confederation of Danish Industries/Danish Centre for Human Rights/Industrialization Fund for Developing Countries, Defining the Scope of Business Responsibility for Human Rights Abuses Abroad, Copenhagen, c1999; AI/PWBLF, Human Rights: Is It Any of Your Business? London, 2000. For NGO perspectives, see, for example, International Council on Human Rights Policy (2002), Beyond Voluntarism: Human Rights and the Developing International Legal Obligations of Companies, Versoix. For academic commentary, see, for example, D’Amato A. (1979), ‘Are human rights good for international business?’, Northwestern Journal of International Law and Business, 1, 22–32; Cassel D. (1996), ‘Corporate initiatives: a second human rights...

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