Question 2: Should Government encourage more sector-specific initiatives and, if so, how might it do that? Do different sectors need different levels of Government support and involvement?
CLT envirolaw response:
The principles of sound corporate social responsibility are not bound to sectors, however sector based case studies are useful for companies for comparability and where they might be seeking to benchmark their own practices or learn from others within the sector. Sector based information may be more helpful for companies seeking to apply voluntary frameworks like the UN Guiding principles on Business and Human rights. Legal compliance is often an issue with little sector based information readily available.
Sector-based initiatives can also provide useful case studies across sectors. For example, companies can compare studies from other sectors that have similar supply chains and use guidance on supplier engagement.
Sectors already have networking systems in place. Integrating an initiative into this, will make it easier to develop awareness, as the Government will be able to use many communication systems that are already in place.
Some sectors have higher risk areas than others for certain non-financial risks and therefore may need more support than others. For example, this has been seen in the approach taken to developing human rights guidance for sectors such as mining and electronics