The Growth of Private Regulation of Labor Standards in Global Supply Chains: Mission Impossible for Western Small- and Medium-Sized Firms?

Jette Steen Knudsen

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

    Abstract

    Multinational corporations (MNCs) have come under pressure to adopt private regulatory initiatives such as supplier codes of conduct in order to address poor working conditions in global supply chain factories. While a well-known literature explores drivers and outcomes of such monitoring schemes, this literature focuses mainly on large firms and has ignored the growing integration of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) into global supply chains. Furthermore, the literature on corporate social responsibility (CSR) in SMEs primarily emphasizes domestic initiatives and not global challenges. Focusing on the Business for Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI), this article examines the positions of private actors, who demand and supply private regulation as well as the positions of those firms, who are the targets of such schemes. As the BSCI has grown its membership, MNCs increasingly request that SMEs meet BSCI requirements in global supply chains even though compliance is a “mission impossible” for many smaller firms. As a result of this development, the private regulatory system is facing growing strain.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of Business Ethics
    Volume117
    Issue number2
    Number of pages12
    ISSN0167-4544
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

    Cite this

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    title = "The Growth of Private Regulation of Labor Standards in Global Supply Chains: Mission Impossible for Western Small- and Medium-Sized Firms?",
    abstract = "Multinational corporations (MNCs) have come under pressure to adopt private regulatory initiatives such as supplier codes of conduct in order to address poor working conditions in global supply chain factories. While a well-known literature explores drivers and outcomes of such monitoring schemes, this literature focuses mainly on large firms and has ignored the growing integration of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) into global supply chains. Furthermore, the literature on corporate social responsibility (CSR) in SMEs primarily emphasizes domestic initiatives and not global challenges. Focusing on the Business for Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI), this article examines the positions of private actors, who demand and supply private regulation as well as the positions of those firms, who are the targets of such schemes. As the BSCI has grown its membership, MNCs increasingly request that SMEs meet BSCI requirements in global supply chains even though compliance is a “mission impossible” for many smaller firms. As a result of this development, the private regulatory system is facing growing strain.",
    keywords = "Corporate social responsibility (CSR), Small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), Global supply chains, Business for social compliance initiative (BSCI)",
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    The Growth of Private Regulation of Labor Standards in Global Supply Chains : Mission Impossible for Western Small- and Medium-Sized Firms? / Knudsen, Jette Steen.

    In: Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 117, No. 2, 2013.

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - The Growth of Private Regulation of Labor Standards in Global Supply Chains

    T2 - Mission Impossible for Western Small- and Medium-Sized Firms?

    AU - Knudsen, Jette Steen

    PY - 2013

    Y1 - 2013

    N2 - Multinational corporations (MNCs) have come under pressure to adopt private regulatory initiatives such as supplier codes of conduct in order to address poor working conditions in global supply chain factories. While a well-known literature explores drivers and outcomes of such monitoring schemes, this literature focuses mainly on large firms and has ignored the growing integration of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) into global supply chains. Furthermore, the literature on corporate social responsibility (CSR) in SMEs primarily emphasizes domestic initiatives and not global challenges. Focusing on the Business for Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI), this article examines the positions of private actors, who demand and supply private regulation as well as the positions of those firms, who are the targets of such schemes. As the BSCI has grown its membership, MNCs increasingly request that SMEs meet BSCI requirements in global supply chains even though compliance is a “mission impossible” for many smaller firms. As a result of this development, the private regulatory system is facing growing strain.

    AB - Multinational corporations (MNCs) have come under pressure to adopt private regulatory initiatives such as supplier codes of conduct in order to address poor working conditions in global supply chain factories. While a well-known literature explores drivers and outcomes of such monitoring schemes, this literature focuses mainly on large firms and has ignored the growing integration of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) into global supply chains. Furthermore, the literature on corporate social responsibility (CSR) in SMEs primarily emphasizes domestic initiatives and not global challenges. Focusing on the Business for Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI), this article examines the positions of private actors, who demand and supply private regulation as well as the positions of those firms, who are the targets of such schemes. As the BSCI has grown its membership, MNCs increasingly request that SMEs meet BSCI requirements in global supply chains even though compliance is a “mission impossible” for many smaller firms. As a result of this development, the private regulatory system is facing growing strain.

    KW - Corporate social responsibility (CSR)

    KW - Small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)

    KW - Global supply chains

    KW - Business for social compliance initiative (BSCI)

    U2 - 10.1007/s10551-012-1527-8

    DO - 10.1007/s10551-012-1527-8

    M3 - Journal article

    VL - 117

    JO - Journal of Business Ethics

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    SN - 0167-4544

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    ER -