Corporate Social and Environmental Responsibility in Global Value Chains
Multinational corporations (MNCs) are increasingly expected to care for responsible business practices. Guaranteeing high human rights and environmental standards in global value chains is a major challenge that corporations face within the 21st century. Changing institutional context as well as pressure from civil society urge corporations to adapt. A good example for these developments is the German law on corporate due diligence in supply chains (deutsch: Lieferkettensorgfaltspflichtengesetz) which turns assuming responsibility in global value chains into a legal duty.
However, managing corporate social and environmental responsibility in global value chains remains challenging for MNCs. Organizational fragmentation between companies and geographical dispersion render it difficult for corporations to have transparency over all production activities in their global value chains. Despite voluntary efforts to improve human rights and environmental standards, a large amount of global production still takes place under dreadful working conditions and poor environmental performance.
We specifically focus on strategies and practices of MNCs towards ensuring human rights and high environmental standards in their global supply chains. These can be for example strategies by a single MNC, but also collective practices such as engaging suppliers and other stakeholders or working in multi-stakeholder initiatives.