It is now broadly acknowledged that companies have responsibilities towards human rights that must be embedded in all they do, from their investment choices and selection of business partners to the recruitment of their workforce and the products that they sell. Yet, how exactly they must proceed remains elusive for many, and the boundaries between state regulations and voluntary initiatives remain blurred.
The Business and Human Rights Journal shall fill an important gap. It shall allow legal doctrine to bring clarity, in the years ahead, to this highly contentious and fast-moving area.
Professor Olivier De Schutter, former United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to food (2008-2014) and Member of the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (2015-2018).
This journal's time has come, and it's long overdue. After fits and starts in the late Twentieth Century concepts of 'human rights' have evolved to provide the indispensable moral language for global politics and commerce. In the area of politics, many journals devoted to human rights already are well-rooted. BHRJ will do the same for commerce. Powerful initiatives such as the UN Global Compact and the World Economic Forum's "Social Covenant" have succeeded in moving social and moral issues to the forefront of business attention. Now authors writing in BHRJ can provide rigor and depth to understanding those issues.
I applaud BHRJ's interdisciplinary openness. Legal scholars, moral theorists, sociologists, historians and others are all invited to participate in cross-disciplinary conversations. When you add to this strength BHRJ's journal's stellar editors and editorial board, the result is a winning formula.
Thomas Donaldson, The Mark O. Winkelman Endowed Professor, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania
Recognition of the human rights obligations of businesses has grown exponentially over the past decade especially following the adoption of UN's adoption of the UN Guiding Principles in 2011. The introduction of a journal devoted specifically to this field is timely as it will benefit from the dynamism of a rapidly developing field, which has wide ramifications for society at a national and international level.
The BHRJ's objective of taking an interdisciplinary approach and canvassing a range of perspectives including from practitioners and vulnerable groups as well as academics, business and the political establishment, is an exciting prospect which will be eagerly awaited.
Richard Meeran, Partner, Leigh Day