This course will explore the business and human rights with a particular focus on what advocacy means from a community perspective. First, we will examine several decades of human rights litigation in the United States against corporations using the Alien Tort Statute. Second, we will examine the strengths and limitations of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, which have become the overarching international standard for the field. From there, we will ask fundamental questions about community lawyering, including how does one defines “community” and other challenges that arise for practitioners as they work with communities. We will conclude with an exploration of what set of principles could more centrally incorporate communities and rights holders’ perspectives into different business and human rights contexts and frameworks. By critically examining advocacy approaches to business and human rights, we will discuss such issues as to how communities represent themselves, the role of women in communities, and how communities interact with lawyers and the human rights system.
Instructor: Prof. Dr. Tyler Giannini