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[PDF] 'Corporate Culture' as a Basis for the Criminal Liability of Corporations

Author: prepared by Allens Arthur Robinson law firm for UN Special Representative John Ruggie, Published on: 1 February 2008

Recently, some jurisdictions have contemplated a new basis for [corporate] criminal liability – 'organisational liability' – that has the potential to address this interaction [between human actors and the corporation] more squarely. Australia, in particular, has introduced provisions holding corporations directly liable for criminal offences in circumstances where features of the organisation of a corporation, including its 'corporate culture', directed, encouraged, tolerated or led to the commission of the offence. This discussion paper:
· evaluates the 'corporate culture' concept in Australian law...;
· undertakes some comparative analysis to illustrate the strengths and weaknesses of various different approaches with regard to issues of accountability and predictability; and
· discusses the merits of applying the 'corporate culture' concept at the liability / prosecution stage, as opposed to the damages / sentencing stage.

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