In 2011, the United Nations Human Rights Council unanimously endorsed the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). Drafted by Prof. John Ruggie (University of Harvard), UN Special Representative, brought a new internationally recognized framework for companies to respect human rights. The UNGPs are also integrated in the OECD Guidelines on Responsible Business Conduct for a variety of supply chains.
As a pioneer worldwide, the commodity trading and shipping community in Switzerland, under the auspices of the Swiss Trading and Shipping Association (STSA) worked in a multistakeholder group to develop a sector specific guidance for the implementation of the UNGPs.
To accompany the sector specific guidance, a new training programme for the implementation of the UNGPs and the OECD Guidelines, specifically tailored for companies active in commodity trading will be launched in November 2018 by STSA.
Requirements for Human Rights Due diligence are increasing. Countries are starting to introduce binding measures like the French law on the Corporate Duty of Vigilance or as foreseen by the German National Action Plan. Switzerland is currently considering introducing binding measures in the framework of the Responsible Business Initiative. In this context, the challenge for companies lies in the implementation of these expectations.
3 Modules / November-December/ 30 total teaching hours: 9 hours per module
The course will follow the structure of the sector-specific guidance for the implementation of the UNGPs
Module 1: Expectations towards companies and human rights risks assessment
Session 1 (Tuesday 13 November): Expectations towards companies
Session 2 (Thursday 15 November): Identification and assessment of Human Rights risks
Session 3 (Tuesday 20 November): Workshop
Module 2: Developing a policy commitment, embedding respect for human rights into management systems and communication
Session 4 (Thursday 22 November): Development of Human Rights policies
Session 5 (Tuesday 27 November): Preventing and mitigating
Session 6 (Thursday 29 November): Workshop
Module 3: Communicating, tracking performance, and remedy
Session 7 (Tuesday 4 December): Communicating and tracking performance
Session 8 (Thursday 6 December): Remedy
Session 9 (Tuesday 11 December): Workshop
Session 10 (Thursday 13 December): Final assignment
Each module is subject to an assessment, including one or a combination of the following: in-class exam, classroom presentations, and take-home assignments
Students who successfully complete the programme will be awarded the STSA Business and Human Rights Certificate. STSA as a trade association is recognized by companies in commodity trading for the quality of its trainings and their adequacy to the needs of the commodity trading activity.