Case studies

This section will compile a collection of case studies by country that provides examples of companies’ good practices in addressing security and human rights challenges on the ground. A few initial examples are presented below, more will be added soon. We invite users of this Hub to share their own case studies on this site by sending an email to or through the contact function of this Hub.


Companies in Fragile Contexts: Redefining social investment

This publication grows out of structured reflection with Norsk Hydro (“Hydro”) management and staff and some of their civil society and government counterparts in the state of Pará in the Amazon region of Brazil. It explores the company’s experience since its 2011 acquisition of aluminium-related mining and industrial assets in a region of acute sociopolitical tension and chronic violence, reaching levels otherwise typically seen only in countries at war.

The study concludes that, the more fragile the context, the less meaningful it is to draw boundaries between the company’s operational impacts and the general socio-political conditions around it; inter-dependencies and systems dynamics loom too large. It explores a different kind of social investment: one that focuses more intentionally on helping to reinforce the social and political functions that are missing or compromised in the fragile context of which the company is part.


Case Study : Engagement with Communities in Mining Projects


This case study was developed by the Cyrus R. Vance Center for International Justice’s Business and Human Rights Initiative.  Based in Colombia, the case study examines a mining company’s strategy for engaging with local communities, with a particular focus on the importance of having a due diligence process and grievance mechanism. Good practices and lessons learned are also included, in order to address and mitigate human rights challenges in corporate engagement with local communities. 


Company Management of Security and Human Rights in Sub-Saharan Africa

This case study was developed by Linklaters LLP as part of a joint project with the Cyrus R. Vance Center for International Justice’s Business and Human Rights Initiative. It traces the history of an oil and gas company making its first investment into a project in sub-Saharan Africa and illustrates best practices in impact assessment as well as challenges that can emerge from underestimating the need for a continuous stakeholder engagement. The case study also provides lessons learned and good practices to address and mitigate key challenges in the engagement with local communities.

This Colombian case study outlines the multi-stakeholder process that led to the creation of the “National Committee for the Implementation of the Voluntary Principles”, which in 2008 was renamed the Mining and Energy Committee on Security and Human Rights (CME). The case study identifies key factors that have made the CME and its implementation of the VPs a success in Colombia and aims to highlight how this approach might be applicable in different contexts.

Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) - Monthly Security and Human Rights Meetings

This short case study illustrates the use and importance of monthly security meetings bringing together extractive companies, as well as local institutions, public security forces, private security companies, NGOs and the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO). Beneficial outcomes of these meetings have included shared good practices as well as the promotion and implementation of VPs standards beyond formal members of the initiative.

Cameroon - Human Rights Training

This case study in Cameroon illustrates how Kosmos Energy and the The Fund for Peace jointly created a human rights training for public security that was consistent with universal human rights standards while resonating with the reality of the local context. It identifies five key elements that can assist human rights training create a sense of local ownership and turn global principles into local practice.

Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) - Training of Public Security Forces

This short case study in the DRC illustrates how Tenke Fungurume Mining (TFM) ensured that public security forces present around their operation sites have completed a relevant human rights training, while national law prevented TFM from providing this training itself. The case study highlights how all stakeholders’ requests could be met through the engagement of the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO).

Iraq - Engagement with Public Security Forces in Rumaila

This case study, by BP and Safestainable, outlines the development and implementation of a Training Assistance Program (TAP) for the Iraqi Oil Police Force (OPF) aimed at facilitating the practical implementation of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights (VPs). The case study illustrates the logic and design of a Train the Trainers approach and includes an overview of the TAP course content. Furthermore, the case study provides policy lessons learned and good implementation practices to overcome key challenges when engaging public security forces on the VPs.

This book provides various perspectives on company-led grievance mechanisms, including the perspectives of affected communities themselves. The book firstly offers background information on grievance mechanism and highlights key drivers, standards and guidance for their design and use. Afterwards, the majority of the book consists of case studies in the oil and gas, forestry, and mining sectors. The case studies identify challenges companies and communities have faced and provide examples of positive and effective grievance mechanisms. The book also includes “a number of specific recommendations on how grievance mechanisms can be designed and implemented to better meet the needs of communities and to avoid the risk and costs of community disputes for business.”

This report builds on the previously published “Guidance on Responsible Business in Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas: A Resource for Companies and Investors” (UN Global Compact and PRI, 2010), which outlines key ‘challenges’ for companies in high-risk areas and identifies directly related ‘guidance points’ to help them improve their responsible conduct. The report highlights the practical value of these ‘guiding points’ by presenting numerous case studies of how companies, investors and Global Compact Local Networks have used and implemented them. The case studies include examples from various industries (see pages 20, 42, 50 and 54 for extractive companies) and address different issues in the four areas of the initial Guidance: Core Business, Government relations, Local Stakeholder Engagement, and Strategic Social Investment.

This guide provides 12 case studies of Rio Tinto operations in different parts of the world. The focus of the case studies lies on the company’s communities and social performance work and aims to provide real-life examples on how to comply with human rights standards in challenging situations. Case studies address, among other topics, security and impact assessments, human rights training programmes and dispute and grievance resolutions. Importantly, the case studies include practical tools, templates and checklists to support the work of communities and social performance practitioners.

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