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Guidance Material

In June 2011, the UN Human Rights Council endorsed Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, which, among other things, provide guidance for business on how to implement the corporate responsibility to respect human rights, a key element of Global Compact Principle 1 and 2. The Guiding Principles are available in all UN languages (Download: لعربية  | 中文 | English | Français | Русский | Español)

The tools listed under the following headings can help businesses to implement the responsibility to respect human rights as well as their commitment to support human rights, which is the other key element in Global Compact Principle 1. In addition, the Global Compact Office has developed a short summary document and complementary presentation demonstrating how some key business and human rights guidance tools and materials found below and on the next page can be used.

General Guidance

Publications from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)

An extensive range of publications produced by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) on a variety of topics related to human rights. The goal of OHCHR's publications programme is to increase knowledge and raise awareness about human rights and fundamental freedoms, and to publicize ways of promoting and protecting them worldwide. OHCHR publications also aim to encourage debate on human rights issues under discussion at the United Nations. The link includes a fact sheet on specific human rights.

>> Publications from OHCHR

Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights: Implementing the United Nations “Protect, Respect and Remedy” Framework

The Guiding Principles seek to provide an authoritative global standard for preventing and addressing the risk of adverse human rights impacts linked to business activity. The Principles are the product of six years of research and extensive consultations, involving governments, companies, business associations, civil society, affected individuals and groups, investors and others around the world.

>> لعربية  | 中文 | English | Français | Русский | Español | Deutsch | Press Release

UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: An Introduction

  Summarizes the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and describes the mandate of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, which has been established to aid in their implementation. As a global standard applicable to all business enterprises, the Guiding Principles provide further conceptual and operational clarity for the human rights principles championed by the Global Compact. (UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, 2013)

>> Download

>> Learn more about the relationship between the Guiding Principles and the Global Compact

Business and Human Rights Learning Tool

Web-based modules integrate exercises and case studies on current trends and expectations towards business on implementation of human rights principles, as reflected in the UN Protect-Respect-Remedy Framework. Upon successful completion of a test of the learning tool content users have the opportunity to obtain a certificate. (UNGC/OHCHR, 2013)

>> Access the Website

A Human Rights Management Framework

This poster — launched in 2007 and updated in 2010 — captures key good business and human rights management practices that are elaborated in more detail in A Guide for Integrating Human Rights Into Business Management as well as in the International Business Leaders Forum publication, Human Rights: It Is Your Business. (UNGC/BLIHR/GBI/IBLF/OHCHR, updated 2010)
>> Poster (pdf) | لعربية | 中文 | English | Français | Русский | Español

Organizational Capacity Assessment Instrument (OCAI)

 
This tool is intended to help companies assess and improve capacity to manage their human rights impacts. The OCAI consists of a self-assessment questionnaire with 22 questions centred on the major elements of the corporate responsibility to respect human rights as outlined in the UN Guiding Principles. Upon completion of the questionnaire a company will be provided with a download-able summary of the results that can be used for awareness raising, strategy development, etc. (TwentyFifty Ltd./Human Rights Peer Learning Group of the Global Compact Network Germany, 2012)
>> Access the OCAI : Deutsch | English | Español | Русский  

Respecting Human Rights: An Introductory Guide for Business

 
Examines human rights principles and explains the role that business should play in respecting these rights. The publication also contains case studies illustrating how business has addressed these rights in practice and explains steps that were taken to fulfill the responsibility to uphold and support human rights. (Global Compact Local Network Germany, twentyfifty Ltd. and German Institute for Human Rights, 2013)
>> Download

Dialogues on Integrating Human Rights: Testimonials by Business Leaders

This series of podcasts is a collection of interviews by business leaders around the world on the mainstream importance of human rights. The interviews focus on how to perform various aspects of human rights due diligence in practice. They are designed to be of practical assistance to other business leaders from across sectors and geographies. (UNGC/GBI, 2010)

>> Dialogues  | Flyer (pdf)

Business and Human Rights Tools and Resources Webinar Series

Launched on Human Rights Day 2009, this series of webinars (web-facilitated teleconferences) highlights various business and human rights tools and guidance materials. The webinar series was developed to help companies navigate the available Human Rights resources and to identify those that are most relevant to their operations. The first webinar presented an introduction to business and human rights, reviewed the expectations of Global Compact principles 1 and 2 and provided an overview of available resources to help implement those principles. Subsequent webinars will explore specific tools and guidance materials in more detail. The Introduction to Business and Human Rights webinar will be conducted in multiple languages. (UNGC/OHCHR/IBLF/BSR/Institute for Human Rights & Business/Danish Institute for Human Rights/GBI, 2009)

>> An Introduction to Business and Human Rights | Presentation (ppt) | Audio (wav)
>> Una Introducción Sobre las Empresas y los Derechos Humanos, y Sobre los Principios de los Derechos Humanos en el Pacto Mundial | Descargar

Embedding Human Rights in Business Practice IV

EHR3

The fourth volume in the Embedding Human Rights in Business Practices series explores eight companies and how they deal with various human rights issues. Like the previous volumes, this publication emphasizes the need for cohesive and sometimes over-arching corporate policies on human rights engagement. (UNGC, 2013)

>> Embedding Human Rights IV (pdf)

Embedding Human Rights in Business Practice III

EHR3

The third volume in the Embedding Human Rights in Business Practices series explores eight companies and how they deal with various human rights issues. Like the previous two volumes, this publication emphasizes the need for cohesive and sometimes over-arching corporate policies on human rights engagement. (UNGC, 2009)

>> Embedding Human Rights III (pdf)

Human Rights and Business Dilemmas Forum

DilemmasForum

This online resource is a multi-stakeholder platform for multi-national corporations with operations, supply chains and distribution networks in regions that present high levels of risk to the realization of human rights. It is designed to help companies and stakeholders understand and share experiences of real-world challenges, particularly in emerging economies. In many cases, these challenges have no short term or straightforward solutions that will satisfy all stakeholders, thus representing a dilemma for responsible business. The Forum offers users the opportunity to share, explore and discuss a wide range of dilemmas, case studies and good practice.  (UNGC/Maplecroft/GE Foundation, 2009)

>>  Human Rights and Business Dilemmas Forum | More Information

A Guide for Integrating Human Rights into Business Management, 2nd Edition

GuidetoforIntegratingHR

The second edition of this Guide offers practical guidance to companies wanting to take a proactive approach to human rights within their business operations and is of use primarily to business leaders and managers in large and medium-sized enterprises, private and state-owned, who would like to develop their understanding of human rights in business practice. (UNGC/BLIHR/OHCHR, updated 2009)

>>  Guide for Integrating Human Rights

Human Rights Translated: A Business Reference Guide

The purpose of this publication is to explain universally recognized human rights in a way that makes sense to business. The publication illustrates, through the use of examples and suggested practical actions, how human rights are relevant in a corporate context. (UNGC/OHCHR/Castan Centre for Human Rights Law/IBLF, 2008)

>> Human Rights Translated (pdf)  | Navigating the Guide (pdf)

Embedding Human Rights in Business Practice II

This second volume in the  Embedding Human Rights in Business Practice series presents 20 case studies of business action related to human rights issues. The case studies highlight various types of actions related to company strategy, policy, processes & procedures, communications, measuring impact & auditing and reporting. (UNGC/OHCHR, 2007)

>> Embedding Human Rights II (pdf)

A Guide for Integrating Human Rights into Business Management,1st Edition

The publication is based on the accumulated experience of the ten companies in the BLIHR — ABB, Barclays, Gap, Hewlett-Packard, MTV Networks Europe, National Grid, Novartis, Novo Nordisk, Statoil and The Body Shop International — in implementing human rights. This experience is supplemented with practical examples of human rights implementation from other companies including BP, Carrefour, Cemex, Codelco, Copel, Eskom, Li & Fung (Trading), MAS Holdings, Shell, Taj Hotels, Tata Enterprises, Telefonica and Valeo. (UNGC/BLIHR/OHCHR, 2006)
 

>> Guide for Integrating Human Rights, 1st edition (pdf)

Embedding Human Rights in Business Practice I

This joint publication of the Global Compact and the Office of the High Commissioner explores the practical meaning of the Global Compact’ s human rights principles for companies, presenting four case studies and a policy report on business practice. The main conclusion drawn from these cases is that proactive efforts to address human rights concerns better equipped businesses to manage risks and helps secure and maintain their license to operate. (UNGC/OHCHR, 2004)
 

>> Embedding Human Rights I (pdf)

How to do Business with Respect for Human Rights

This publication builds on the Protect, Respect and Remedy framework of the UN Special Representative for Business and Human Rights (SRSG). The descriptions, learnings and guidance points collected in this guidance are based on the experiences of ten multinational companies of the Global Compact Network Netherlands and are intended to help companies implement a commitment to respect human rights in line with the framework of the SRSG. (Global Compact Network Netherlands, 2010)
 

>> How to do Business with Respect for Human Rights (pdf)

The Human Rights Matrix

The Human Rights Matrix is an initial self-assessment and learning tool that enables a company to begin to understand and address its human rights performance, by identifying its policies on human rights and the approaches it has taken towards human rights. It will help companies SIMPLIFY, VISUALISE, ASSESS AND MANAGE their human rights programmes and performance. (BLIHR/GBI/Credit 360, updated 2010)

>>  The Human Rights Matrix

A Practical Handbook on Business and Human Rights

This guide, produced by The Institute for Social Innovation (ESADE) and the School for a Culture of Peace, aims to provide information and reflections on current business and human rights issues and help them to manage these issues in the framework of their CSR policy. It is intended for both companies that have already taken the first steps in managing their human rights policies and those that intend to so in the medium term. (ESADE/School for a Culture of Peace, 2009)

>> Practical Handbook on Business and Human Rights

Human Rights: It is your Business

This paper summarizes societal expectations of business with respect to human rights and describes evolving good practice on how the corporate response can be managed effectively and efficiently. (IBLF, 2005)

>>  Human Rights: It is your Business (pdf)

 

Human Rights: Is it any of your Business?

This publication aimed at company managers offers a comprehensive and practical introduction to business and human rights and addresses the human rights issues and dilemmas that affect companies across their operations. Purchase required. (The Prince of Wales Business Leaders Forum/Amnesty International, 2000)

>> Human Rights: Is it any of your Business

 

Human rights principles for companies

This document deals with the responsibility multinational companies have to promote and protect human rights in their own operations. It recommends the development of explicit company policies, training, consulting non-governmental organizations and impact assessments. A checklist for use by companies forms part of the document. (Amnesty International, 1998)

>> Human rights principles

 

Global Compact Self Assessment Tool on Human Rights

This tool addresses the UN Global Compact's two principles on human rights. It allows companies to assess their human rights performance against international standards, conventions and agreements. (UNGC/Danish Institute for Human Rights/Confederation of Danish Industry/Ministry of Economic and Business Affairs/Danish Industrialisation Fund for Developing Countries, 2006)

>> Self Assessment Tool on Human Rights (English)
>> Presentation on Self Assessment Tool on Human Rights (French)

 

What Executives Need to Know (and Do) About Human Rights

This article explains the ten things executives and their advisers need to know about human rights. Developed by a member of the Global Compact Human Rights Working Group. (Anthony Ewing, 2013)

>> What Executives Need to Know (and Do) About Human Rights

Human Rights Policies

Guide on How to Develop a Human Rights Policy

Provides instruction on how businesses can develop and implement a human rights policy within their companies. (UNGC, 2011)

>> Guide on How to Develop a Human Rights Policy

 >> 人权政策指南

 >> Deutsch

 

 

Webinar: Guide on How to Develop a Human Rights Policy

Provides an introduction to the UNGC/OHCHR business and human rights resource, "Guide on How to Develop a Human Rights Policy." (UNGC, 2011)
>> Presentation | Audio file (mp3)

 

Database of company human rights policies

On the website of the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre, a database of company human rights policies is available. This part of the website contains links to more than 100 company policy statements explicitly referring to human rights. (BHRRC)

>> Human Rights Policies

 

 

Risk Assessment

 

 

Guide to Human Rights Impact Assessment and Management

This interactive online tool — revised from the Road-Testing Draft 2007 — is designed to provide companies with guidance on how to assess and manage human rights risks and impacts of their business activities. While the Guide may benefit different types of organizations, companies are the main and intended audience of the Guide to HRIAM. The Guide to HRIAM can be accessed free of charge, following registration. (UNGC/IFC/IBLF, updated 2010)

>> Guide to HRIAM

The Arc of Human Rights Priorities: A New Model for Managing Business Risk

The Arc of Human Rights Priorities is a new approach to in-company human rights management. The Arc builds upon the Sphere of Influence concept and is designed to allow companies to focus their resources on the most urgent human rights issues in their operations. The Arc maps human rights issues along two axes: Human Rights Impact and Company Connection. These dimensions allow companies to identify the human rights risks with the greatest impact and the most direct company responsibility. The Arc exercise identifies 'high-priority' issues for each company, including a graphic representation of the company's human rights profile. This prioritization allows companies to monitor, prevent and mitigate the most urgent issues, as well as find opportunities for the greatest positive impact. (UNGC/Danish Institute for Human Rights, 2009)

>> The Arc of Human Rights Priorities: A New Model for Managing Business Risk (pdf)

Human Rights Compliance Assessment Tool – Version 2.0

A diagnostic tool designed to promote corporate social responsibility by providing companies with information about how to avoid human rights violations in all aspects of their operations. The tool has been mapped against the guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and can assist companies with GRI and Global Compact reporting. First launched in 2005, the HRCA was fully updated and reprogrammed to incorporate new content, feedback from more than 60 company and institutional users around the world and developments in the business and human rights field. (Danish Institute for Human Rights, updated 2010)
>> HRCA Portal
 

Due Diligence for Human Rights: A Risk-Based Approach

This working paper outlines an introductory framework for human rights due diligence based on risk assessment. It provides prospective CSR managers and corporate legal counsel with practical guidance and also a helpful introduction on the principles and rationales underlying such due diligence. (Harvard Kennedy CSR Initiative, 2009)
>> Due Diligence for Human Rights (pdf)

HRCA Quick Check

The HRCA Quick Check comprises approximately 10% of all the questions contained in the entire HRCA database and relates to some of the most essential human rights issues a company must consider in relation to its activities. (Danish Institute for Human Rights, 2006)
>> PDF Chinese | Danish | Dutch | English | Spanish | Ukrainian

Maps of human rights risks

Indices and maps on human rights risk shows the level of risk in 196 different countries worldwide. This includes 30 different human rights risk indices and maps clustered into four categories: human security, labour rights and protection, civil and political rights, and access to remedy. Each of the 30 maps include risk scores for each country as well as trend analysis, sub-national (i.e. region and province data) and sector overlays. To access the maps simply register and select 'Human rights' from the Global Risks Portfolio menu. (Maplecroft)

>> Maplecroft (official website)

Impact Assessment

Guide to Human Rights Impact Assessment and Management

This interactive online tool — revised from the Road-Testing Draft 2007 — is designed to provide companies with guidance on how to assess and manage human rights risks and impacts of their business activities. While the Guide may benefit different types of organizations, companies are the main and intended audience of the Guide to HRIAM. The Guide to HRIAM can be accessed free of charge, following registration. (UNGC/IFC/IBLF, updated 2010)

>> Guide to HRIAM

 

Human Rights Compliance Assessment Tool – Version 2.0

A diagnostic tool designed to promote corporate social responsibility by providing companies with information about how to avoid human rights violations in all aspects of their operations. The tool has been mapped against the guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and can assist companies with GRI and Global Compact reporting. First launched in 2005, the HRCA was fully updated and reprogrammed to incorporate new content, feedback from more than 60 company and institutional users around the world and developments in the business and human rights field. (Danish Institute for Human Rights, updated 2010)
>> HRCA Portal

Guide to Corporate Human Rights Impact Assessment Tools

This guide presents an overview of the existing HRIA tools that corporations and managers can use to implement human rights norms within the business practices and policies. It gives advice to select the tool(s) that assure the best HRIA process for the corporation. This guide offers the practical assistance that corporations need to become social responsible and leads managers through the labyrinth of Human Rights Compliance Assessment. (Aim for Human Rights, 2009)

>> Impact Assessment Guide | Resource Centre

 

Human Rights Impact Resource Centre

The Human Rights Impact Resource Centre (HRIRC) is a website that seeks to provide information about other tools for conducting human rights impact assessment. (Aim for Human Rights, revised 2008)

>> HRIRC

Best Practice Guide to the Human Rights Compliance Assessment

This guide offers multinational companies answers to questions on human rights and business. The guide is based on practical experiences of companies with Human Rights Compliance Assessment tools. (Aim for Human Rights, 2007)

>> Best Practice Guide

Human Rights Impact Assessments for Foreign Investment Projects: Learning from Community Experience in the Philippines, Tibet, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Argentina, and Peru

This publication, the first of three on exploring the relationship between foreign investment and human rights, is based on a draft methodology of impact assessment as applied to five case studies listed in the title.  This first volume provides valuable insights that will be of interest to governments, business as well as civil society. (Rights and Democracy, 2007)

>> Human Rights Impact Assessments for Foreign Investment Projects

 

HRCA Quick Check

The HRCA 'Quick Check' comprises approximately 10% of all the questions contained in the entire HRCA database and relates to some of the most essential human rights issues a company must consider in relation to its activities. (Danish Institute for Human Rights, 2006)
>> PDF Chinese | Danish | Dutch | English | Spanish | Ukrainian

Good Practice Note: Addressing the Social Dimensions of Private Sector Projects

This practitioner's guide is meant to encourage International Finance Corporation clients engaging in projects abroad to assess the social impact of their operations. The guide is a valuable resource on the entire process of impact assessment, from baseline data collection to the monitoring of social impacts after the projects have been begun or have been completed. The guide treats social assessment in a way that goes beyond mere mitigation, seeing it as integral to sustainable development as a whole. (IFC, 2003)

>> Addressing the Social Dimensions (pdf)

Stakeholder Engagement

Social Sustainability Resource Guide

While a number of companies have implemented sustainability initiatives, few measure the social impacts of their operations and programs in communities. This guide provides a framework for creating and applying social impact measurements in connection with corporate activities within the communities where companies operate. (ICCR, 2011)

>> Social Sustainability Resource Guide (pdf)

 

Setting up a Multi-Stakeholder Panel as a Tool for Effective Stakeholder Dialogue

This good practice note shares lessons learned by companies that have set up multi-stakeholder panels to encourage and improve stakeholder dialogue, both locally and globally. The note also identifies advantages, challenges and good practices. (UNGC, 2010)

>> Setting up a Multi-Stakeholder Panel (pdf)

Addressing Grievances from Project-Affected Communities

This good practice note provides an expanded guidance framework for companies in dealing with stakeholder engagement. Dealing specifically with the design and implementation of grievance mechanisms, this publication addresses principles and issues that companies of any type or size may have to address when engaging in dialogue with affected communities. This document highlights a number of case studies from IFC clients, including some from the extractive and manufacturing industries. (IFC, 2009)

   >> Addressing Grievances (pdf)

Embedding Rights Compatible Grievance Processes for External Stakeholders Within Business Culture

This report is designed to aid companies in adapting internal integrated conflict management (ICM) programmes for use to engage with external stakeholders. The report is written from the perspective of corporate counsel and focuses on ICM as a form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR). (Harvard Kennedy CSR Initiative, 2009)

>> Embedding Rights Compatible Grievance Processes (pdf)

Introduction to Health Impact Assessment

This introductory guidebook provides companies with a basic overview on how to engage communities via Health Impact Assessments (HIAs). Specifically, it addresses methodological approaches to HIAs, assists in developing terms of reference (TOR) that may be required to conduct HIAs and provides helpful resources including websites, mitigation measures, a screening-process checklist and sample outlines of recommended risk assessment activities, among others. This publication is meant to be used by companies who are concerned about potential health impacts on local communities due to their operations, but is not meant to be a guide on occupational health and safety. (IFC, 2009)

>> Health Impact Assessment (pdf)

 

Proactive Stakeholder Engagement: A Practical Guide for Companies and Stakeholders

This guide for companies and stakeholders maps the many different forms of engagement and provides options for innovative engagement mechanisms. (CSR Europe, 2008)

>> Proactive Stakeholder Engagement (pdf)

 

Stakeholder Engagement: A Good Practice Handbook for Companies Doing Business in Emerging Markets

This handbook offers good practice "essentials" for building and sustaining constructive stakeholder relationships as a means of risk mitigation, new business identification, and enhancing development outcomes. Over thirty case examples from private sector operations across regions and sectors illustrate various aspects of the engagement process, including stakeholder identification and analysis; information disclosure; consultation processes; negotiation and partnerships; grievance management; monitoring and reporting; and management functions. (IFC, 2007)

>> Stakeholder Engagement Handbook (pdf)

From Words to Action: The Stakeholder Engagement Manual

The handbook outlines a comprehensive approach to successful and strategically aligned engagement, and includes a broad range of practical tools and templates. The Guide illuminates various groups’ perspectives on engagement, and provides an in-depth examination of stakeholder engagement processes, their opportunities and challenges. (AccountAbility/UNEP, 2006)

>> Stakeholder Engagement Manual (Volume I)
>> Stakeholder Engagement Manual (Volume II)

 

Guide to Engaging with NGOs

As companies with global operations seek to enhance their corporate social responsibility efforts, many are finding value in dialogue and other engagements with nongovernmental organizations, or NGOs. This guide, developed by Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) and based on input from its company members, creates a framework for understanding the growth and evolution of these partnerships. (BSR, 2001)

   >> Guide to Engaging with NGOs (pdf)

Investing in People: Sustaining Communities Through Improved Business Practice

This guidance publication is designed to allow private sector entities to more effectively engage with local communities and other stakeholders so as to foster sustainable development in areas affected by the entities' operations. It provides both overarching principles as well as good practice examples drawn from IFC clients. While the guide is meant primarily for company project managers, CEOs and other corporate officers, it may also be of value to NGOs, researchers, community leaders and policy makers. (IFC, 2000)

>> Investing in People (pdf)

Leadership and Corporate Accountability Slides

This two page slide developed by Harvard Business School is designed to help business think through their response in situations such as when they are called upon to engage in advocacy on human rights in a country in which they operate. (Harvard Business School)

>> Human Rights Advocacy (pdf)

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