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American Unity Starts with the Truth

President Biden made a passionate appeal for unity in his inaugural address Wednesday, saying, “My whole soul is in this: bringing America together, uniting our people, uniting our nation. And I ask every American to join me in this cause.” Those words reflect Biden’s character and temperament. He seeks common ground, not confrontation. This is a welcome […]

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How Business Can Boost Human Rights in 2021

Few will regret the passing of 2020, a year headlined by a global health crisis, profound economic distress, and high-profile examples of racial inequality. From my vantage point, working on human rights in a business school, the past year has underscored the need for global business leaders and government officials to take a more deliberate, […]

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How Tesla Should Combat Child Labor in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

Elon Musk recently announced that Tesla plans to manufacture 20 million electric-powered vehicles by 2030. His bold growth target dovetails with California Governor Gavin Newsom’s announcement that he will propose that his state require all new cars and trucks to be non-gasoline powered by 2035. The impetus is clear: Global warming is threatening our planet, and a […]

Featured Ethics [and Human Rights] Scholar for April: Mike Posner

Interview with Mike Posner, Jerome Kohlberg Professor of Ethics and Finance and Director for the Center of Business and Human Rights at NYU Stern School of Business

 

What are your main areas of research/work?

When we launched the Center in 2013, we sought to pioneer new ways of investigating business practices at the industry level. Our methodology prioritizes interview-based research with business leaders and other stakeholders, combined with documentary evidence, policy and data analysis, and visualization.

 

How does strengthening human rights help reduce ethical misconduct in companies?

To date, most approaches to address human rights or sustainability in business have focused on what happens within the four walls of the firm. They focus on the activities of individual managers to improve company practices or corporate financial contributions to improve the environment, women’s empowerment, or public health. We are very focused on how large global companies make money, their business models for doing so, and the human rights risks in their industry that accompany that model.