Undergraduate Module Descriptor

LAW3108C: Business and Human Rights Law

This module descriptor refers to the 2021/2 academic year.

Module Content

Syllabus Plan

Whilst the precise content may vary from year to year, it is envisaged that the syllabus will cover all or some of the following topics:

  • The origins and evolving nature of the modern corporation.
  • The intersection of business practices and human rights protection, with case studies from several sectors, including, for example, the garment industry, pharmaceuticals, and the extractive industries.
  • The evolution and shortcomings of accountability under State-centric human rights and the limits of corporate social responsibility. 
  • The development and implementation of an international legal framework specific to business and human rights, and the role of business in upholding international human rights law.
  • Judicial and non-judicial remedies.
  • Future developments.

Learning and Teaching

This table provides an overview of how your hours of study for this module are allocated:

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

...and this table provides a more detailed breakdown of the hours allocated to various study activities:

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled learning and teaching activities1111 x 1 hour lectures
Scheduled learning and teaching activities7.55 x 1.5 hour seminars
Scheduled learning and teaching activities84 x 2 hour workshops
Guided independent study73.5Preparation for scheduled learning and teaching sessions, including pre-reading and the completion of learning activities.
Guided independent study50Assessment preparation

Online Resources

This module has online resources available via ELE (the Exeter Learning Environment).

Other Learning Resources

  • International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (adopted 16 December 1966, entered into force 23 March 1976) 999 UNTS 171.
  • International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (adopted 16 December 1966, entered into force 3 January 1976) 993 UNTS 3.
  • UN Human Rights Council, ‘Report of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises, John Ruggie, Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Implementing the United Nations “Protect, Respect and Remedy” Framework’ (21 March 2011) UN Doc A/HRC/17/31.
  • Legally Binding Instrument to Regulate, in International Human Rights Law, the Activities of Transnational Corporations and other Business Enterprises (Zero Draft Text) (16 August 2018):  www.ohchr.org/documents/hrbodies/hrcouncil/wgtranscorp/session3/draftlbi.pdf