Total attacks on defenders tracked in the portal

New body of research clarifies why & how businesses should support civic freedoms & human rights defenders


Human rights defenders and civic freedoms essential for profitable business, say major companies

The statement is the first of its kind, with supporters including Unilever, adidas, Primark, ABN AMRO, Anglo American, Leber Jeweler, Domini and the Investors Alliance on Human Rights, and stresses that when human rights defenders are under attack, so is sustainable and profitable business. Governments and investors everywhere should take notice today as a group of major brands call for protecting human rights defenders and civic freedoms, which are under attack across the world.


Database of attacks on defenders working on businesses-related human rights abuses

Search our database of attacks below, find out about the design and the methodology here or share your case!

Explore incidents by related sector or company, country or attack type

The size of the circles indicate the number incidents. Zoom in for more detail and click the circles for information

Key findings

3.2 billion people live in constrained civic space and civic freedoms

From our partners: CIVICUS Monitor shows that civil society is under serious attack in 111 out of 196 countries. This is up from 109 countries at our last update in March 2018. 

Access CIVICUS Monitor

Situation of defenders is particularly vulnerable

Resource Centre's findings: Over 1400 attacks on defenders working on businesses-related human rights abuses took place from 2015-2018. Find out who is getting attacked, by whom and why - and how the situation changed from 2017.

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News & developments

Find out more about the latest news and the most important actions and ideas at the intersection of business, civic freedoms and the work of human rights defenders here and through our bulletin. Archive of highlighted items available here

Subscribe to our bulletin   January 2018 Bulletin

Women human rights defenders are leading the way for corporate accountability

On the 8th of March 2019, the International Women's Day, we celebrate the courage, vision and unmatched leadership of women human rights defenders, working for corporate accountability. The analysis of our data also shows that because of that, they are being directly and indirectly attacked by companies, the police, the justice systems and organized crime. 


World Economic Forum: Defending the Shared Space session

When operating in environments where civil liberties are under pressure, what is the role of business leaders in standing up for the protection of a shared space with civil society?  Jeanne Bourgault, Debbie Stothard, Dominic Barton, Timothy Snyder, and Jean-Pascal Duvieusart discuss this notion at WEF 19.


Civic society and human rights defenders are key to making Globalization 4.0 work for everyone

Forging a new social compact is necessary in the face of the enormous changes that are coming. But this is only possible when all people can speak up, participate and help define what security and progress looks like. Find out what companies can do to protect civic freedoms and how globalization 4.0 can't succeed unless defenders and civic freedoms are protected.