UN "Protect, Respect and Remedy" Framework and Guiding Principles

UN Special Representative John Ruggie proposed a framework on business & human rights to the UN Human Rights Council in June 2008, resting on three pillars:

  1. the state duty to protect against human rights abuses by third parties, including business;

  2. the corporate responsibility to respect human rights; and

  3. greater access by victims to effective remedy, both judicial and non-judicial.  '

The Human Rights Council unanimously approved the Framework in 2008. 

  • brief explanation of the Framework by Special Representative Ruggie here [PDF]
  • full text of the Framework here [PDF]
  • other materials related to his 2008 report to the Council and presentation of the Framework here

Also in 2008, the Human Rights Council extended the Special Representative’s mandate until 2011 with the task of "operationalizing" and "promoting" the Framework.  Commentaries on the Framework and other aspects of the Special Representative's work available here.

In March 2011, Special Representative Ruggie issued "Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Implementing the United Nations 'Protect, Respect and  Remedy' Framework".  This followed an online consultation held by the Special Representative on a draft of the Guiding Principles from November 2010 through January 2011.  The Guiding Principles were endorsed by the UN Human Rights Council in June 2011.

Applications of the Framework

During his mandate, the Special Representative identified instances where the Framework was used and referred to [PDF] by governments, national human rights institutions, NGOs, companies & business organizations, investors, international organizations, academics, UN Special Procedures and legal organizations and others.

In-depth areas