Regulating business via multistakeholder initiatives: a preliminary assessment

Lead author: Peter Utting       Year: 2002      

Publication Abstract

Since the 1980s, there has been a considerable shift in thinking regarding how to improve the social and environmental performance of transnational corporations. An earlier emphasis on governmental regulation ceded ground to “corporate self-regulation” and voluntary initiatives. This voluntary approach has evolved in recent years and assumed new institutional forms which attempt to overcome some of the limitations of company codes of conduct and other selfregulatory initiatives. The latest shift in approach involves the emergence of so-called “multistakeholder initiatives” where NGOs, multilateral and other organizations encourage companies to participate in schemes that set social and environmental standards, monitor compliance, promote social and environmental reporting and auditing, certify good practice, and encourage stakeholder dialogue and “social learning.”


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  • Publication type:

    • Book chapter
  • Other authors:

    • Peter Utting