Government’s Role

What Next for Business and Human Rights at the UN?

05 July 2011

Expert Meeting

On 4-5 July 2011, the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES), the Institute for Human Rights and Business (IHRB), and the UN Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) convened a two-day expert dialogue to reflect on future actions concerning the subject of business and human rights, both within the UN human rights system and beyond.

At its June 2011 session, the UN Human Rights Council unanimously adopted Guiding Principles for the implementation of the UN endorsed “Protect, Respect, Remedy” framework on business and human rights proposed by UN Special Representative (SRSG), John Ruggie. These Principles, as well as the decision by the Human Rights Council with respect to follow up to the SRSG mandate, will be key to further global, regional and national action on this important aspect of the human rights agenda.

The 4-5 July meeting, held under the Chatham House rule (see participants list attached), was intended as an early opportunity for a diverse group of individuals to reflect on possible next steps by relevant actors including governments, businesses, international organizations, trade unions, national human rights institutions and civil society to advance the business and human rights agenda in the time ahead. This report aims to capture the main issues raised during the discussions. It is by no means a comprehensive summary of the rich dialogue that took place.

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