International Labour Regulation: What Have We Really Learnt So Far?

20 Pages Posted: 15 Apr 2010 Last revised: 30 Oct 2013

See all articles by George Tsogas

George Tsogas

Humanistic Management Network

Date Written: January 1, 2008


Can soft regulatory approaches and corporate social responsibility ever be substitute methods for pursuing meaningfully across the globe violations of labour standards? Our analysis shows the limits of country, government, and hard-law based international labour regulation, but also the ambiguities and challenges of soft labour regulation. We introduce an updated model of international labour regulation and create a conceptual framework for analyzing labour regulation. We provide some insights into how regulation has developed over the last decades and discuss some of the challenges it faces. Our assessment of the various regulatory regimes is based on the simple premise of whether they can provide a venue for workers’ rights violations to be redressed. We aim to provide a broad overview and an attempt at generalizing the findings and “lessons learnt” so far from an international and comparative industrial relations perspective.

Keywords: Soft Labour Regulation, Social Clauses, Codes of Conduct, Corporate Social Responsibility, International Labour Standards

JEL Classification: K31, K33

Suggested Citation

Tsogas, George, International Labour Regulation: What Have We Really Learnt So Far? (January 1, 2008). Relations Industrielles/Industrial Relations, Vol. 64, No. 1, 2009, Available at SSRN:

George Tsogas (Contact Author)

Humanistic Management Network ( email )

St. Gallen

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