International Corporate Accountability Roundtable

Past projects


1. Human rights due diligence

On December 3, 2012, in conjunction with the United Nations Annual Forum on Business and Human Rights, the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR) along with the European Coalition for Corporate Justice (ECCJ) and the Canadian Network on Corporate Accountability (CNCA) launched the report below written and researched by International Experts on Business and Human Rights, entitled “Human Rights Due Diligence: the Role of States.” The International Experts commissioned included Professor Olivier De Schutter, Professor Anita Ramasastry, Mark B. Taylor and Robert C. Thompson.

The Report builds off of a set of global Consultations with legal practitioners, academics and experts from around the world and examines how States are using their regulatory authority to mandate due diligence for human rights or areas akin to human rights, such as environmental protection and workplace health and safety. The Report seeks to establish the extent to which the legal systems of States already make use of due diligence to ensure that businesses respect established standards and to describe for policymakers a range of regulatory options they might use to take the next steps in ensuring businesses respect human rights.


Due Diligence Examples

Download the Full Report

See full versions of the report in EnglishFrench, and Spanish.

Translations of the Executive Summary are available in ArabicPortugueseMandarin Chinese (simplified), and Russian, courtesy of the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre.

See remarks by our Keynote Speaker, Member of European Parliament Mr. Richard Howitt, at the Report Launch in Geneva here


2. Righting Remedy

Access to effective remedy for violations of human rights is a core requirement of human rights protection. Legal and practical barriers prevent victims from accessing effective remedies, both in the judicial and non-judicial context. Increasing attention has been focused on the identification of the most significant barriers to remedy, as well as to what States can do to eliminate these barriers. Yet, to date, there has been little collaboration among organizations that focus their efforts on judicial mechanisms and organization that focus their efforts on non-judicial mechanisms.

ICAR, in partnership with the Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO), launched the “Righting Remedy” Project, to build knowledge and strengthen capacity among communities seeking to identify and eliminate barriers in the judicial and non-judicial spheres. The Project aims to bring the two communities together to discuss shared obstacles, exchange lessons learned, determine what remedies are possible and appropriate using the various existing mechanisms, explore how research in the two areas can be combined, and to co-strategize around breaking down current barriers.

For more information on ICAR’s work related to the Righting Remedy Project, contact Legal and Policy Director, Sarah McGrath, at


Analysis and Updates from this Project:



3. State Level Remedies

The State Level Remedies project focuses on access to justice within domestic state courts. Increasingly, survivors of human rights abuses are turning to state court in search of a civil remedy for the harms they suffered. However, state-level litigation presents unique hurdles for survivors.

This project focuses on developing state-specific guidance on the relevant substantive and procedural aspects of litigating international human rights claims. To complement that effort, the second phase of the project will focus on developing and promoting state-level legislation to ensure the state courts remain open to victims and enhance corporate accountability for human rights abuse. These proposals will seek to ease some of the hurdles victims currently face in bringing these cases and mandate increased transparency.

For more information on ICAR’s work related to State Level Remedies, contact Cindy Woods, Legal and Policy Associate, at

Analysis and Updates from this Project:


4. Materiality and non-financial reporting

ICAR works to support transparency and disclosure over non-financial information, including about human rights policies, procedures, risks and steps taken to address or mitigate against impacts.

Analysis and Updates from this Project:


5. The Third Pillar

On December 4, 2013, the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR), CORE, and the European Coalition for Corporate Justice (ECCJ) launched “The Third Pillar: Access to Judicial Remedies for Human Rights Violations by Transnational Business.” The Report was researched and written by Professor Gwynne Skinner, Professor Robert McCorquodale, Professor Olivier De Schutter, and Andie Lambe, all international experts on business and human rights. The Report was launched in conjunction with the United Nations Second Annual Forum on Business and Human Rights.

The Authors developed this Report by gathering information through a series of research consultations, as well as some independent research. The consultation participants included those in legal practice and non-governmental organizations (both lawyers and non-lawyers), legal academics, as well as senior retired judges and experienced consultants in this area.

This Report shows that, two years from the universal endorsement of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, States are failing in their obligation to ensure access to effective judicial remedies to victims of human rights violations by businesses operating outside their territory. It identifies and analyzes the most significant barriers to effective judicial remedy in the United States, Canada, and Europe, setting out detailed recommendations for the actions States should take to address the issue.

The report is available for download in EnglishFrench, and Spanish.

Analysis and Updates from this Project: