ACN and SHIFT hold consultations to better measure business respect for human rights

A Valuing Respect Project Consultation was held on 29 August 2018 at Concorde Hotel, Singapore in collaboration with SHIFT. This was the first ASEAN region meeting for the recently launched Valuing Respect Project, which aims to develop better ways to evaluate business respect for human rights.

This is a three-year project, led by SHIFT, ASEAN CSR Network, the Centre for Human Rights in the University of Pretoria and the Polish Institute for Human Rights and Business, involving research, consultation and crystallization of insights and products. It aims to produce fresh insights, smart tools, methodologies and indicators for assessing how well companies address their human rights risks and impacts, so that companies and their stakeholders can focus resources on actions that drive improved outcomes for people.

The consultation, among other things, aimed to  address:

  • the use of indicators by companies and by external ratings, rankings and indices;
  • methodologies for developing meaningful metrics;
  • what information investors require to inform decision-making;
  • pitfalls and innovations in assessing responsible supply chain efforts, and
  • applying lessons from diverse fields such as management, accounting, health and safety, and international development.

16 individuals from businesses, academia, civil societies, international organizations and national human rights commissions participated in the closed-door consultation. It was an in-depth consultation, with cross-disciplinary conversation about the state of practice of evaluating business respect for human rights, and a focus on setting the foundations and identifying strategic ways forward for the project.