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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 117: Additional initiatives


i. Keidanren (Japan Federation of Economic Organisations): Charter of Corporate Behaviour, 2002 Commentary: The Charter was first introduced during 1991 and subsequently revised in 1996, 2002 and 2004: see The original Japanese language version is the official text used by Keidanren. The Charter includes ten principles with respect to legal compliance, consumer confidence, fair competition, information disclosure, positive environmental involvement, committing to good corporate citizenship, promoting economic development, providing safe and comfortable working environments, rejecting relationships with organisations engaged in illegal activities and management responsibility for implementation in consultation with stakeholders. In the event of violations, management is expected to investigate, develop reforms, make information publicly available and initiate disciplinary action. ii. Social Venture Network: Standards of Corporate Social Responsibility, 1999 Commentary: The Social Venture Network ( was established in 1987 to promote business roles in solving social problems. Developed over four years and intended to be a living document, the Standards are a compendium of strategies and techniques for improving organisational performance. They were the product of collaboration between several SVN members in recognition that companies have social obligations to operate in an ethically, socially and environmentally responsible manner. Each Standard consists of Principles (a brief value statement), Practices (practical illustrations), Measures (tangible performance indicators observable in qualitative, quantitative or monetary terms) and Resources (additional information sources, tools, and techniques for implementing customised approaches). The Principles consist of a commitment to ethical behaviour, stakeholder accountability, good corporate governance, providing attractive and competitive financial returns, fair employment practices, honest...

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