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The Business & Human Rights Resource Centre is at a critical point in its development. Our digital platform is home to a wealth of information on business and human rights, but hasn’t had a visual refresh for a number of years.

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UN Forum on Business and Human Rights

UN Forum on Business and Human Rights
First annual Forum: Geneva, 3-5 Dec 2012


Latest additions:


- Presentations & discussions at UN Forum on Business & Human Rights - with links to live video stream, archived videos of sessions, and texts of remarks as they become available


- Materials launched at Forum - including guide for small & medium-sized enterprises by EU; guide for NGOs on how to use Guiding Principles in company research & advocacy; "Human Rights Due Diligence - The Role of States" by NGO coalitions; "The Corporate Responsibility to Respect Human Rights in Business Relationships" by IHRB & GBI


- Programme of events & side events including final programme updated 3 Dec; full announcements of side events organised by NGOs, business groups, National Human Rights Institutions & others
   - short version of programme


- "Largest global dialogue on the impact of businesses on human rights starts in Geneva, 3-5 December" - projected turnout of around 1000 participants "much higher than expected"


- Working Group on business & human rights conducts baseline survey on State implementation of Guiding Principles - preliminary results to be presented at the Forum




The annual UN Forum on Business and Human Rights is organised by the UN Working Group on business & human rights.  The first annual Forum is being held in Geneva, 3-5 Dec 2012, and chaired by Professor John Ruggie, former UN Special Representative on business & human rights.  The official opening is on 4 December, but due to a high number of requests, side events to the Forum were also held on 3 December


Official page on website of Office of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights


Key documents for the Forum
Materiales claves para el Foro de la ONU sobre empresas y derechos humanos
Documents clés pour le Forum des Nations Unies sur les entreprises et les droits de l'homme
مواد اساسية لمنتدى الامم المتحدة لقطاع الاعمال وحقوق الانسان
Основные документы Форума ООН по вопросам бизнеса и прав человека


Provisional agenda
Programa provisional
Ordre du jour provisoire
Предварительная повестка дня


Background note by the Secretariat
Nota de antecedentes de la Secretaría
Note d’information du secrétariat  
ﻣﺬﻛﺮة ﻣﻌﻠﻮﻣﺎت اﺳﺎﺳﻴﺔ اﻋﺪﻬﺎ اﻷﻣﺎﻧﺔ
Справочная записка секретариата


Concept note by the Working Group
Nota conceptual preparada por el del Grupo deTrabajo
Note de synthèse du Groupe de travail
ﻣﺬﻛﺮة ﻣﻔﺎﻫﻴﻤﻴﺔ

Концептуальная записка Подготовлена Рабочей группой


Invitations & registration


Invitation to register [PDF], 31 Aug 2012
- Further information for all participants on how to register - deadline was 1 Nov
- Practical information for participants - and Important info for participants - access to Palais des Nations


[español] Invitación para registrarse al primer Foro sobre las empresas y los derechos humanos, Ginebra, 4-5 de diciembre - la fecha límite para registrarse fue el 1 de noviembre


[français] Invitation à s'inscrire pour participer au premier Forum de l'ONU sur les entreprises et les droits de l'homme, Genève 4-5 déc. - la date limite d'inscription était le 1 novembre


Mandate & preparation


In the run-up to the Forum, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) hosted a Google+ Hangout on Business and Human Rights on 22 Nov 2012: click here for video.  The Hangout focused "on ways to ensure the meaningful public participation of concerned communities when there is a possibility business operations may impact on their human rights."   Moderated by Lene Wendland of OHCHR.  Participants: Harpreet Kaur, South Asia Researcher & Representative, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre; Reinford Mwangonde, Executive Director, Citizens for Justice - Friends of the Earth Malawi; Mark Hodge, Executive Director, Global Business Initiative on Human Rights,


Prior to the appointment of the chair of the Forum, the Secretariat of the Human Rights Council posted a Note Verbale regarding nominations for the chairperson of the first session of the Forum on Business and Human Rights.


Planning for the Forum was the subject of the UN Working Group on business & human rights' second session, 7-11 May 2012.  See also interventions made at this session and the Working Group's report of the outcome of the session.


The Human Rights Council established the Forum on Business and Human Rights in the same resolution that established the Working Group, and mandated it "to discuss trends and challenges in the implementation of the Guiding Principles and promote dialogue and cooperation on issues linked to business and human rights, including challenges faced in particular sectors, operational environments or in relation to specific rights or groups, as well as identifying good practices...[The] Forum shall be open to the participation of States, United Nations mechanisms, bodies and specialized agencies, funds and programmes, intergovernmental organizations, regional organizations and mechanisms in the field of human rights, national human rights institutions and other relevant bodies, transnational corporations and other business enterprises, business associations, labour unions, academics and experts in the field of business and human rights, representatives of indigenous peoples and non-governmental organizations..."  The Forum meets annually for two working days.

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Related stories and components

31 August 2012
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Author: Oficina de Alto Comisionado de las Naciones Unidas

La Oficina de Alto Comisionado de las Naciones Unidas para los Derechos Humanos...tiene el honor de transmitir una invitación a las partes interesadas para registrarse para el primer Foro sobre las empresas y los derechos humanos, que tendrá lugar del...

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31 August 2012
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Author: Haut-Commissariat des Nations Unies aux droits de l'homme

Le Haut-Commissariat des Nations Unies aux droits de l'homme a l'honneur de transmettre une invitation aux acteurs concernés à s'inscrire pour participer au premier Forum sur les entreprises et les droits de l'homme, qui aura lieu du 4 au 5 décembre...

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