• Offered by Law School
  • ANU College ANU College of Law
  • Course subject Laws
  • Areas of interest Law, Business Administration, Human Rights
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Alexandra Newton
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Summer Session 2015
    See Future Offerings

The phenomena of globalisation and human rights are two of the most influential features of international relations in the twenty-first century. This course will examine the ways in which these two spheres intersect and diverge, interrogating the extent to which their goals are contradictory and/ or mutually supporting.  

Today, alongside governments, companies are often viewed both as non-state sources of human rights abuse and as international actors with the capacity and resources to promote human rights. Human rights advocates have shined a spotlight on human rights conditions in a wide range of transnational industries including oil and mining; the manufacturing of apparel, carpets, footwear, sporting goods, and toys; the agricultural production of coffee, tea, cocoa and bananas for global markets; and the pharmaceutical and other high technology sectors.

The abuses at issue include complicity with governments that violate human rights, child and forced labor, limits on freedom of association, and dangerous and unhealthy conditions for workers and communities. During the same period, business and human rights has emerged as a distinct field within the broader corporate responsibility movement. In response to growing pressure to address human rights issues, transnational companies have undertaken human rights initiatives that seek to manage human rights risks, and in some cases, promote human rights as a source of competitive advantage in the marketplace. This seminar analyses the challenges and opportunities that arise for advocates and business managers at the intersection of business operations and efforts to promote international human rights.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

 At the conclusion of the course students will:

  • have a sound knowledge of the concepts of corporate social responsibility and sphere of influence; their complexities and how they are impacted by globalisation.
  • understand the human rights standards that affect business and the remedies that are available to human rights advocates seeking to influence corporate policies and practices.
  • be aware of corporate human rights initiatives, including policies, multi-stakeholder programs, and human rights impact assessments.
  • have developed a strong understanding and knowledge of the particular human rights challenges facing a company in a particular transnational industry.

Indicative Assessment

Class participation, including an in-class presentation - 20%

A 6,000 to 7,000 word research paper

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Approximately  26 hours of face-to-face teaching. In addition a substantial amount of reading and class preparation will be required.

Click here for the current timetable

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must be studying a: Master of Laws specilising in International Law (7300SINTL), Master of Laws in International Law (NLLIN), Master of Diplomacy/Master of International Law (7893XMINTL), Master of Diplomacy/Master Laws (7883SINTL), Master of International Law (7310XMINTL), and completed LAWS8182 Principles of International Law OR Must be studying a: Master of Legal Studies (7305XMLEGS) Master of Environmental Law (7309XMENVL) Master of Government and Commercial Law (7313XMGCL) Master of Law, Governance and Development (7317XMLGD) Master of International Security Law 97318XMISL) and completed LAWS8189 Fundamentals of Environmental Law OR Master of Laws (7300XLLM, MLLM) Master of Laws specialising in Law, Governance and Development (7300SLGD) Master of Laws specialising in Environmental Law (7300SENVL) Master of Laws specialising in Government and Commercial Law (7300SGCL) Master of Laws specialising in International Security Law (7300SISL) Master of Laws in Migration (NLLML) Master of Laws in Environmental Law (NLLEN) Master of Laws in Law, Governance & Development (NLLGD) Master of Laws in International Security Law (NLLSL) Master of Laws in Government and Regulation (NLLGR) Master of Laws (Legal Practice) (7312XLLMLP) OR Must be studying a Juris Doctor (7330XJD, 7330HJD or MJD) and completed or be completing five LAWS1000 level or 6100 level courses, and LAWS2250 International Law or LAWS6250 International Law OR Must be studying a Graduate Certificate of Law (CLAW) and have completed LAWS8586 Law and Legal Institutions and (LAWS8182 Principles of International Law or LAWS8189 Fundamentals of Environmental Law)


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2015 $2958
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2015 $4146
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Summer Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
1723 20 Feb 2015 20 Feb 2015 27 Mar 2015 18 Apr 2015 In Person N/A

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