Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights (VPs)


Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights Implementation Guidance Tools (IGTs, 2011)


The Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights: An Implementation Toolkit for Major Project Sites (World Bank Group Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency and Anvil Mining, 2008)


Getting it Right: Human Rights Impact Assessment Guide (Rights & Democracy)


Human Rights and Business Country Guide


Global Compact Self Assessment Tool


Integrating Human Rights into Environmental, Social and Health Impact Assessments (IPIECA, 2013)


Preventing Conflict in Exploration: A Toolkit for Explorers and Developers (PDAC, World Vision Canada, CDA, 2012)


Guide to Human Rights Impact Assessment and Management (IBLF and IFC, 2010)


Guidance on Responsible Business in Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas: A Resource for Companies and Investors (UN Global Compact and Principles for Responsible Investment-PRI-initiative, 2010)


e3 Plus: A Framework for Responsible Exploration (PDAC, 2009)


Guide to Operating in Areas of Conflict for the Oil and Gas Industry (IPIECA, 2008)


Conflict-Sensitive Business Practice: Guidance for Extractive Industries (International Alert, 2005)


Conflict-Sensitive Approaches to Development, Humanitarian Assistance and Peacebuilding: Resource Pack (APFO, CECORE, CHA, FEWER, International Alert, Saferworld, 2004)


A Business Guide to Conflict Impact Assessment and Risk Management (UN Global Compact, 2002)


Risk & Impact Assessment

Companies often face considerable challenges when trying to assess accurately risks present in their operating environment. As the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights indicate, human rights due diligence must go beyond identifying and managing risks to the company, to include risks to right-holders. Several guidance documents and tools have been developed to help companies assess risks, such as those listed below.

The VPs were established in 2000 in response to security and human rights challenges around extractive operations. The VPs are a multi-stakeholder initiative in which governments, extractive companies and NGOs work together to guide extractive companies in “maintaining the safety and security of their operations within an operating framework that encourages respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms”. See section on ‘Risk Assessment’.

The IGTs provide a “set of tools designed to help companies, their employees, and contractors implement the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights.” The tools are organized in four thematic modules – Stakeholder Engagement, Risk Assessment, Public Security Providers, and Private Security Providers – which can be used either independently to address specific challenges or together to support overall implementation of the VPs in the field. See Module 2 on ‘Risk Assessment’.

This toolkit aims to provide guidance on how to develop a comprehensive VPs implementation program that companies can tailor to their specific location and needs. See section 2 on ‘Risk Assessment’.

This guide is an online platform that offers a step-by-step process to support users analyzing the positive and negative human rights impacts of a foreign investment project. The guide is divided into six parts, including: A) Preparation, B) Legal Framework, C) Adapting the Guide, D) Investigation Process, E) Analysis and Report, and F) Engagement, Monitoring and Follow-Up. Each step includes reference documents, examples of research techniques and questions, references to various indicators, relevant websites, and details on where to find specific information. While the guide is primarily aimed at communities it can prove very useful to company-led processes that emphasize the participation of local communities. The guidance is available in English, French and Spanish and includes a ‘virtual library’ that compiles hundreds of useful resource materials. 

The Human Rights and Business Country Guide is currently in a Pilot Phase providing specific business and human rights guidance on 10 countries, expanding to cover 40 countries by 2016. The Country Guide identifies valuable information for governments, companies and civil society organisations dedicated to protect and promote human rights in the context of business. 1) For companies, it provides country-specific guidance to understand and address potential human rights risks and development initiatives. 2) States can use the country information to review and reform policies and legislations to ensure respect for human rights in their own business affairs. 3) The Guide provides civil society organisations with information to “inform their research, advocacy and capacity building efforts.”

This self-assessment tool was established by the UN Global Compact initiative to assist companies in evaluating their policies' and operations’ compliance with social and environmental standards. The online tool includes the following five sections of assessment: 1) Management; 2) Human rights; 3) Labour; 4) Environment; and 5) Anti-corruption.

This guide offers practical advice on how human rights can be integrated into environmental, social and health impact assessments (ESHIAs) conducted for projects undertaken by the extractive industry. It is targeted at ESHIA practitioners in the oil and gas industry and is structured in three parts: 1) Human rights issues and impacts in the oil and gas industry; 2) Human rights considerations in the ESHIA process steps; 3) Strategic themes and processes. The guidance provided is illustrated with case studies and practical examples.

This Toolkit offers a straightforward and practical five-step guidance "for preventing conflict through constructive community engagement in exploration". The step-by-step instructions are aimed to assist field staff and management in facilitating conflict sensitive engagement strategies in complex environments. See steps 3 and 4 on risk assessment.

This guidance document is intended for companies of all sizes and industry sectors committed to assessing and managing the human rights risks and impacts of their business activities. The guide outlines a seven stage framework to identify and evaluate human rights risks and impacts, and to subsequently incorporate the evaluation’s results into the company’s management system. The document is structured in seven sections corresponding to these seven steps: 1) Preparation; 2) Identification; 3) Engagement; 4) Assessment; 5) Mitigation; 6) Management; and 7) Evaluation. The document additionally provides a hypothetical, industry-specific human rights scenario, to help oil and gas companies assess their current ability to address human rights challenges.

This guidance document “aims to assist companies in implementing responsible business practices in conflict-affected and high-risk areas consistent with the Global Compact Ten Principles.” It highlights key ‘challenges’ for companies in high-risk areas and identifies directly related ‘guidance points’ to help them improve their responsible conduct. See section 1 ‘guidance point’ #1, on how to identify the interaction between core business and conflict dynamics.

The e3 Plus framework combines principles, guidance and toolkits for exploration companies in three key areas of concern: ‘Social Responsibility’, ‘Environmental Stewardship’, and ‘Health and Safety’. The aim is to continuously improve the extractive industry’s performance in all three areas and to integrate the identified principles in all its exploration programs. For practical guidance on risk assessment see section 2.4 ‘The Basics of Risk and Risk Assessment’ in the ‘Social Responsibility’ toolkit.

This guidance document outlines frameworks and guidelines on risk assessment and risk management for oil and gas companies operating in zones of potential or existing conflicts and in post-conflict situations. It includes three case studies: 1) Oil and community relations in the Niger Delta (Nigeria); 2) Working with NGOs to implement a conflict sensitive approach in La Cira (Colombia); and 3) Managing risks of low-level community conflict in Tangguh (Indonesia).

This publication “consists of guidance on doing business in societies at risk of conflict for field managers working across a range of business activities, as well as headquarters staff in political risk, security, external relations and social performance departments." See section 3 for guidance and tools on risk and impact assessment at the national- and project-level.

This Resource Pack draws on established practices, frameworks and past lessons to identify key elements and recommendations on ‘conflict sensitivity’ – “the notion of systematically taking into account both the positive and negative impact of interventions, in terms of conflict or peace dynamics.” See Chapters 2 and 3 for practical guidance on conflict analysis and its involvement in each step of the project cycle.

This Business Guide aims to assist companies in assessing and managing risk in actual or potential zones of conflict, to avoid doing harm and to promote a positive business, social and political environment. To this end, it provides tools for risk assessment/management, stakeholder analysis and impact assessment in the areas of human rights, international humanitarian law, labor and environment.

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