OECD Responsible Business Conduct/Guidelines

Saner, R.; Yiu, L., (2020); Labor Rights as Human Rights: The Role of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation  and Development’s (OECD’s) Responsible Business Conduct Guidelines.

Successful resolution of conflicts around human rights and business in the context of the OECD Guidelines requires competencies in international legal, financial, and managerial rules and practices in addition to the known competencies in consensus building, mediation and conflict resolution. These multi-disciplinary competencies are needed to solve conflicts involving different stakeholders such a multinational companies, civil society organisations and governments facing reported violations of human rights by private sector companies.

Raymond Saner, “Transnational Firms Responsibilities”, presentation given during conference on “Intergenerational Dialogue: People, Planet and Prosperity - Can social mobilization change the agenda at local, national and global levels?”, Greycells, Geneva, 24th June 2021

The article narrates the creation of the academic network in 2013 of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (Guidelines).


The goal of this short recall is to narrate an important development which occurred in 2013 around the time of the First Global Forum on Responsible Business Conduct (RBC) held at the OECD in Paris. It was my first international conference that focused on the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (Guidelines) and that’s where I met Roel Nieuwenkamp the first time.

Roel Nieuwenkamp is Chair of the OECD Working Party on Responsible Business Conduct, an Intergovernmental Working Group, focused on Corporate Responsibility. He supervises and provides leadership to CSR programmes on the Financial Sector, Mining Sector and conflict minerals.

R. Saner (2018), Investment Trends and OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (The Guidelines) and the United Nations Guiding Principles (UNGPs)

The UNGPs and the OECD Guidelines are the two most authoritative guidance documents for implementation of Responsible Business Conduct. While the UNGPs focus on business and human rights, the OECD Guidelines go further and have a broader scope. In addition to human rights, the OECD Guidelines also cover employment and industrial relations, the environment, fighting corruption, consumer interests, science and technology, competition and taxation.

CSEND Policy Brief, Nr. 16, April 2015

Raymond Saner, Girolamo Viciglione and Lichia Yiu

The regulation of business conduct is a controversial topic and it has been at the centre of attention of the OECD for several decades. A first version of the guidelines dates back to 1976 and has been reviewed five times since then in order to improve its effectiveness in dealing with responsible business conduct by adapting the guidelines to economical and non- structural changes over time. This short article narrates the gradual improvement of the OECD guidelines.

Raymond Saner, Girolamo Viciglione, Lichia Yiu and Mario Filadoro, 2015

The data shown in this presentation has been retrieved from the OECD online database, which contains all the officially reported cases of violations of the OECD guidelines to multinational enterprises.