/ Áreas de Investigação

Corporate Social Responsibility

For more than hundred years enterprise (companies, mostly) interests, goals or purposes have been discussed. Facing each other, monistic/dualistic and pluralistic, contractual/institutionalist, and shareholderist/stakeholderist views.

CSE (Corporate Social Responsibility) comes along with the second element of those alternatives. It is usually considered as something that can and should be done, although the law does not say that it must be done (without legal consequences or liabilities).

Recently, CSE has been included in several Codes (Principles, Guidelines, Statements) as recommendations (v. g., BRT – Business Roundtable – and WEF: World Economic Forum); and promoted (but not imposed) by some laws.

Even more recently, one important milestone is the European Parliament Proposal in the Resolution of 10 March 2021 of a Directive «on corporate due diligence and corporate accountability» on human rights, environment and (public) good governance. Now, the view is to make mandatory some values traditionally associated with CSE.

CSE calls for the collaboration (with interdisciplinary touch) of different legal fields: company law, labour law, environmental law, constitutional law, criminal law, tax law, among many others. And it clearly is covered by the UCILeR Strategic Programme, in which keywords like «responsibility», «sustainability» and «globalization» may be read.

Coordination: Jorge M. Coutinho de Abreu

Research Axes

  • CSE consequences on legal areas
  • Lights and shadows of CSR views
  • Possibilities and limitations of (voluntary) CSR
  • Promoting CSR with the law
  • CSR between soft law and hard law
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