Navigating Turbulent Waters Connecting the World Trade Organization (WTO) and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
Posted: 18 Sep 2008
Date Written: September, 15 2008
this paper uses the metaphor of a fisherman's journey into the World Trade Organization (WTO) and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) "seas" to explore the relation between them. It is intended to be an introductory paper to the reader seeking a basic understanding of this relationship. An argument can be made that the WTO and CSR waters are not connected at all: the WTO is an intergovernmental organization regulating rights and duties of members (mainly states), while CSR concerns non-governmental initiatives dealing with corporate behavior, such as voluntary codes of conduct and certification processes of social and environmental standards. However, this paper explores the existence of potential straits connecting the seas and provides encounters with the sea creatures that represent the relevant jurisprudence informing the debate.
Keywords: World Trade Organization (WTO), Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Voluntary Codes, Certification, Private Standards, GATT, TBT, SPS, GPA.
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