Business and Human Rights in Europe : International Law Challenges book cover
1st Edition

Business and Human Rights in Europe
International Law Challenges

Edited By

Angelica Bonfanti

ISBN 9780367586034
Published June 30, 2020 by Routledge
288 Pages

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Book Description

Transnational business activities are important drivers of growth for developing and the least developed countries. However, they can also negatively impact the enjoyment of human rights. In some cases, multinational enterprises (MNEs) have even been accused of grave human rights abuses in the territory of the states where their subsidiaries operate. Since the parent companies of many MNEs are incorporated under the law of European states, those countries’ domestic law and the European legal framework play a crucial role in establishing how their activities should be conducted – also throughout their supply chains – and which remedies will be available when corporate human rights violations occur. In recent years, the European Union, the Council of Europe and their Member States have been adopting policies and legislation to ensure respect for human rights by businesses and have developed a body of related case law. These legal instruments can be considered the European responses to the challenges posed at international-law level, and they constitute the focus of research of this book. Through its collected chapters – written by scholars and practitioners under the direction of the editor, Angelica Bonfanti – the book identifies the European solutions to the business and human rights international legal issues, provides an overall assessment of their effectiveness, and examines their potential evolution.

Table of Contents

Notes on Contributors



List of Abbreviations

1 Introduction

Angelica Bonfanti

2 Sustainable Development Goals in Europe and Their Intersection with the Business and Human Rights Framework

Paolo Davide Farah

3 Managing Global Interdependencies through Law and Governance: The European Approach to Business and Human Rights

Daniel Augenstein

Part I

The State Duty to Protect Human Rights: The European Perspective

4 Enforcing the State Duty to Protect under the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Strasbourg Views

Marco Fasciglione

5 Are European Home States of Transnational Corporations Responsible for Their Impacts Abroad under the ECHR?

Claire Methven O ’ Brien

6 The Duty to Protect in Public Procurement: Toward a Mandatory Human Rights Clause?

Deborah Russo

7 The EU’s Promotion of Human Rights and Sustainable Development through PTAs as a Tool to Influence Business Regulation in Third Countries

Leonardo Borlini

8 National Action Plans: A Pathway to Effective Implementation of the United Nations Guiding Principles?

Marta Bordignon

Part II

The Corporate Responsibility to Respect Human Rights: European Approaches

9 European Approaches to Promoting Responsible Supply Chains

Cindy S . Woods

10 Due Diligence, Reporting and Transparency in Supply Chains: The United Kingdom Modern Slavery Act

Olga Martin- Ortega

11 Blending Together Human Rights Due Diligence with ‘Criminal’ Law: Opportunities and Pitfalls of the Italian Solution

Paola Cavanna

12 From Human Rights Due Diligence to Duty of Vigilance: Taking the French Example to the EU Level

Tiphaine Beau de Loménie, Sandra Cossart and P aige Morrow

13 Corporate Human Rights Compliance and Disinvestment: Lessons from the Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund

Ludovica C hiussi

14 EU Approaches on ‘Conflict Minerals’: Are They Consistent with the UN/OECD Supply Chain Due Diligence Standards?

Valentina Grado

15 ICT Companies’ Responsibility to Respect Human Rights: Remarks in the Light of the EU General Data Protection Regulation

Angelica Bonfanti

Part III

Access to Remedy in Europe

16 Access to Remedy for the Victims of Corporate-Related Human Rights Abuse: Assessing the Contribution of the Fundamental Rights Agency

Carmen Márquez Carrasco

17 Adjudicate This! Foreign Direct Liability and Civil Jurisdiction in Europe

Lucas Roorda

18 The Civil Liability of the Parent Company for the Acts or Omissions of Its Subsidiary: The Example of the Shell Cases in the UK and the Netherlands

Claire Bright

19 Corporate Liability and Human Rights: Access to Criminal Judicial Remedies in Europe

Adriana Espinosa González and Marta Sosa Navarro

20 European Trends in Tort Law Remedies to Address Corporate Human Rights Abuses

Florentine Vos

Concluding Remarks

Angelica Bonfanti


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Angelica Bonfanti is Associate Professor in International Law in the Law Faculty of the University of Milan. Her research activity focuses chiefly on public and private international law, business and human rights, cyber law, and international trade and investment law.