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Researching Forced Labour in the Global EconomyMethodological Challenges and Advances$
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Genevieve LeBaron

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780197266472

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197266472.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM BRITISH ACADEMY SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.britishacademy.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright British Academy, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in BASO for personal use.date: 09 December 2019

Transparent Companies? Legal Research Strategies to Understand Forced Labour in Global Supply Chains

Transparent Companies? Legal Research Strategies to Understand Forced Labour in Global Supply Chains

Chapter:
(p.148) 9 Transparent Companies? Legal Research Strategies to Understand Forced Labour in Global Supply Chains
Source:
Researching Forced Labour in the Global Economy
Author(s):

Andreas Rühmkorf

Publisher:
British Academy
DOI:10.5871/bacad/9780197266472.003.0009

Private commercial relationships constitute significant practical challenges for researchers analysing issues of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), such as forced labour in global supply chains. The private nature of commercial relations means that freedom of information requests are not available. One way for researchers to study forced labour in global supply chains, therefore, is to use information made available by the corporations themselves. This Chapter draws on empirical legal research methods to explore the value of publicly available documents on how companies address CSR issues. It argues that, despite some limitations, it is possible to use data that is available on company websites such as codes of conduct, terms and conditions of purchase and nonfinancial reporting to assess business practices. These documents can complement both traditional doctrinal legal research of cases and statutes and research from other disciplines, thus providing new opportunities for research on forced labour in global supply chains.

Keywords:   empirical legal research, documentary analysis, global supply chains, forced labour, CSR

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