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Institute for Human Rights and Business

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The Institute for Human Rights and Business (IHRB) is a global human rights think tank focused on the impacts of companies on people. IHRB's work combines evidence-based research and advocacy with direct engagement and convening together businesses, governments, intergovernmental organisations, trade unions, non-governmental organisations, academia, and others to advance its mission of making human rights part of everyday business.

IHRB holds ECOSOC Special Consultative status with the United Nations.[1]

IHRB is led by John Morrison[2] (CEO), and has staff and representatives present in Colombia, Denmark, France, Mexico, Myanmar, Singapore, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.

Focus areas and work to date[edit]

IHRB was founded in 2009. The organisation's early years were dedicated to producing research in support of securing the endorsement by the United Nations Human Rights Council in 2011 of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. As part of its work to put the UN Guiding Principles into practice, IHRB has established a range of independent institutions with missions dedicated to specific areas of implementation, including:

  • The Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business (MCRB),[3] a joint initiative of IHRB and the Danish Institute for Human Rights, established in 2013 to "provide a trusted and impartial platform for the creation of knowledge, building of capacity, undertaking of advocacy and promotion of dialogue amongst businesses, civil society, governments, experts and other stakeholders with the objective of encouraging responsible business conduct throughout Myanmar."
  • Centro Regional de Empresas y Emprendimientos Responsables (CREER) established by IHRB in 2014 as a "regional hub and centre of south-south learning, knowledge and exchange, using its affiliation with IHRB to develop strategic partnerships and share lessons internationally."
  • The Leadership Group for Responsible Recruitment (LGRR),[4] established in 2016 to eradicate the practice migrant workers paying recruitment and other fees to secure jobs. IHRB serves as the secretariat, and it is chaired by Kevin Hyland. Members of the Leadership Group currently include: The Coca-Cola Company, General Electric, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, HP, IKEA, Mars, Incorporated, Marks & Spencer, Nestlé, Nike, Inc., Tesco, Target Corporation, PepsiCo, Unilever, Vinci, Walmart, as well as the International Labour Organization (ILO), International Organization for Migration (IOM), Verité Research, Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, and Migrant Forum in Asia.
  • The Corporate Human Rights Benchmark (CHRB),[5][6][7] was launched in 2013 as a joint initiative of IHRB and Aviva Investors, the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre, APG Asset Management, Vigeo-Eiris, and Calvert Investments. It produced its first ranking in 2016, and has since assessed hundreds of companies across numerous sectors on their human rights performance. In 2019, the CHRB became part of the World Benchmarking Alliance.
  • The Centre for Sport and Human Rights (CSHR)[8][9] was founded by IHRB in 2018 as a human rights organisation for the world of Sport. The Centre has an Advisory Council of over 40 different sports governing bodies, governments, sponsors, non-governmental organisations, broadcasters, trade unions, and inter-governmental organisations, including: FIFA, The Commonwealth Games Federation, International Paralympic Committee, UEFA, The International Labour Organization, The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, The International Organisation of Employers, International Trade Union Confederation, the Government of Switzerland, amongst many others.

IHRB's current programmes focus on a range of global issues and sectors, such as migrant workers, LGBTI+, just transitions, the built environment, shipping, finance, technology, trade, and COVID-19.[10] IHRB's annual Top Ten Business and Human Rights Issues list has also been regularly reviewed.[11][12][13]


  1. "United Nations Civil Society Participation – General". esango.un.org. Retrieved 2021-08-06.
  2. Rogers, Patrick (10 December 2018). "6 people who make human rights their everyday mission". HP. Retrieved 7 August 2021. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  3. "Vicky Bowman, the diplomat who caught the Burma bug". Burma News International. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  4. "Mars, Tesco, Vinci and GE Join Leadership Group for Responsible Recruitment". www.triplepundit.com. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  5. Thompson, Jennifer (4 August 2018). "Six projects that drive quality and assurance in ESG". Financial Times. Retrieved 7 August 2021.
  6. Thompson, Jennifer (14 November 2019). "Starbucks, Amazon and Costco rapped for weak human rights disclosure". Financial Times. Retrieved 7 August 2021.
  7. Rekosh, Edwin (2017). Rethinking the Human Rights Business Model: New and Innovative Structures and Strategies for Local Impact (Report). Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).
  8. "Human rights experts debate risks and gains for FIFA, IOC". FOX Sports. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  9. "The Ticket 10 July 2016". ABC Radio. 2019-05-07. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  10. Tripathi, Salil (July 2020). "Companies, COVID-19 and Respect for Human Rights". Business and Human Rights Journal. 5 (2): 252–260. doi:10.1017/bhj.2020.16. ISSN 2057-0198. Unknown parameter |s2cid= ignored (help)
  11. Slavin, Terry (January 2019). "Leading commentators take stock of a turbulent year for responsible business in Ethical Corporation's review of 2018". Ethical Corporation. Retrieved 7 August 2021.
  12. Chakravarti, Sudeep (2015-12-18). "IHRB and the right human rights tune". mint. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  13. Chakravarti, Sudeep (2020-02-06). "Opinion | Human rights caught in the fake news storm". mint. Retrieved 2021-08-07.

External links[edit]

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