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Corporate Social Responsibility
This course provides an introduction to the law and policy issues that touch on the responsibility of enterprises for their activities. It provides an overview of corporate social responsibility (CSR), as a subject of legal regulation within states, as a matter of international law and compliance beyond the state, and as a tool and methodology of corporate governance and finance with governance effect through contract. The emphasis is on the study of the legal and regulatory frameworks, both existing and emerging within states, in international institutions, and within production chains and the apex corporations that manage them. The course begins with definitional issues and variations in approaches between major jurisdictions. It then turns to the existing law of CSR, focusing specifically on charitable giving and disclosure regimes. It then considers the rise of CSR regulatory regimes as privatizing law making using the mechanisms of contract to regulate CSR related conduct throughout a production chain. It then considers the emergence of international standards as they inform regulatory efforts in states and enterprises and as normative standards in their own right.