The UNGPs in the European Union: The open coordination of business and human rights

Daniel Augenstein, Mark Dawson, Pierre Thielbörger

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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    The paper examines the implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in the European Union via National Action Plans. We argue that some of the shortcomings currently observed in the implementation
    process could effectively be addressed through the Open Method of Coordination – a governance instrument already used by the EU in other policy domains. The paper sketches out the polycentric global governance approach envisaged by the UNGPs and discusses the institutional and policy background of their implementation in the EU. It provides an assessment of EU member states’ NAPs on business and human rights, as benchmarked against international NAP guidance, before relating experiences with the existing NAP process to the policy background and rationale of the OMC and discussing the conditions for employing the OMC in the business and human rights domain. The paper – building on a recent opinion of the EU Fundamental Rights Agency – concludes with a concrete proposal for developing an OMC on business and human rights.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-22
    Number of pages22
    JournalBusiness and Human Rights Journal
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2018


    • United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, Open Method of Coordination, National Action Plan, European Union


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