27 Nov 2023 – 29 Nov 2023
Venue: Palais de Nations & Online
The 12th United Nations Forum on Business and Human Rights, taking place from 27 to 29 November 2023 at Palais des Nations, brings together more than 2,000 participants from government, business, community groups and civil society, law firms, investor organisations, UN bodies, national human rights institutions, trade unions, academia and the media, for the world's largest annual gathering on business and human rights.
About the Business and Human Rights Forum
The UN Forum on Business and Human Rights is the world’s largest annual gathering on business and human rights with more than 2,000 participants from government, business, community groups and civil society, law firms, investor organisations, UN bodies, national human rights institutions, trade unions, academia and the media.
Over three days, participants take part in 60+ panel discussions on topics that relate to the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (the United Nations “Protect, Respect and Remedy” Framework), as well as current business-related human rights issues.
The Forum is the foremost event to network, share experiences and learn about the latest initiatives to promote corporate respect for human rights.
12th United Nations Forum on Business and Human Rights
After more than 12 years of normative development that has established business and human rights standards in line with the UNGPs, this year’s Forum, under the theme “Towards Effective Change in Implementing Obligations, Responsibilities and Remedies”, will reflect on the actual changes that have occurred in the implementation of these standards. These include the actions that States have taken to incorporate these standards through regulation and policies, the extent to which businesses have applied these standards in their practices throughout their operations, and whether judicial and non-judicial remedies in this area are more available and accessible to those negatively impacted by business-related human rights abuses.
In considering these changes, the key questions that are likely to be considered at the Forum include:
- What are the drivers for, and obstacles to, effecting positive change?
- How can progress be measured?
- To what extent are there observable changes at the regional and sub-regional levels, and what are the remaining challenges at the different levels of implementation (e.g., local and national)?
- What, if any, are the impacts of these changes on the lived experiences of those affected by business activities?
- How can the ambitions of States and businesses be raised to make real change?
- What good practices can be found in the actions of States, businesses, and other stakeholders?
- What judicial and non-judicial approaches have been implemented and what are their outcomes?
- What are effective multi-stakeholder approaches for advancing the business and human rights agenda?
This Forum provides an opportunity to reflect critically on the changes which have been made since the UNGPs were adopted, with a particular focus on sharing examples and stories of positive change. Participants will consider whether and to what extent these changes have proved effective, especially for rights-holders, and what still needs to be achieved.
Environment @ 2023 UN BHR Forum
The Forum will also provide an opportunity to address various issues in focus. These may include “standing items” for the Forum agenda, such as human rights defenders, civic freedoms and the role of business; gender, business and human rights; Indigenous Peoples rights and impacts of business activities; and more.
Environment-related events include the events below. A live-updated programme of work is available on Sched.
Monday, 27 November 2023
- Towards effective remedy for persons affected by large scale land acquisition: progress and opportunities in Africa | 10:00 – 11:20 CET | Room XIX & Online
- Opening plenary | 11:40 – 13:00 CET | Room XX & Online
- Addressing the root causes of environmental racism: leveraging the UNGPs as a tool for transformative change | Working Group on business and human rights | 15:00 – 16:20 CET | Room XIX & Online
- Just Transition in Energy and Extractives Industries | Working Group on business and human rights, Fair Finance Asia – Oxfam, Permanent Mission of Switzerland, Australian Human Rights Institute UNSW Sydney, Business and Human Rights Centre University of Geneva, and Swedwatch, and with the support of the Danish Institute of Human Rights | 15:00 – 16:20 CET | Room XX & Online
- How the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights can inform the negotiations on a new legally binding instrument to end plastic pollution | OHCHR, Working Group on business and human rights, Peru, Ecuador, CIEL & GEN | 16:40 – 18:00 CET | Room XXVI & Online
- Practical Approaches to Rights-Based Climate Action for Business Enterprises | 16:40 – 18:00 CET | Room XX & Online
Tuesday, 28 November 2023
- The updated OECD Guidelines – a new roadmap for tackling climate change | Working Group on business and human rights & OECD Centre for Responsible Business Conduct | 10:00- 11:20 CET | Room XX & Online
- UDHR75 Anniversary plenary | 11:40 – 13:00 CET | Room XX & Online
- Ensuring Access to Justice: the Essential Role of Human Rights Defenders | Working Group on business and human rights | 15:00- 16:20 CET | Room XX & Online
- Realizing the right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment: progress and opportunities for human rights due diligence and the environment in practice | 15:00- 16:20 CET | Room XIX & Online
Wednesday, 29 November 2023
- Understanding the intersections between advertising and human rights: an urgent frontier for action | 10:00 – 11:20 CET | Room XXVI & Online
- Saliency 2.0: A conversation with civil society, investors and businesses on what the next generation of human rights saliency assessments look like in 2023, why they matter for effective implementation of the UNGPs and how they are evolving | 13:20- 14:40 CET | Room XIX
- Upholding the rights of Indigenous Peoples in the green economy | 15:00- 16:40 CET | Room XX & Online
- Investors, ESG and BHR: Open Consultation | 15:00- 16:40 CET | Room XXVI & Online
- Closing plenary | 17:00 – 18:00 CET | Room XX & Online
From advertising as a new frontier for #humanrights, investors and #ESG, to #IndigenousPeoples and #greeneconomy, learn more about the programme and the Forum!
▶️ https://t.co/NJmLq7hqfg pic.twitter.com/eQV5YWEcN8
— GENeva Environment Network (@GENetwork) November 29, 2023