BP (formerly British Petroleum) has become one of the world’s most controversial giant corporations because of its involvement in a series of major environmental and industrial accidents. The company has been the target of intense criticism for its role in the April 2010 explosion at a drilling platform in the Gulf of Mexico that killed 11 workers and caused an underwater leak that has spewed millions of gallons of crude oil into the ocean, creating the most serious environmental disaster in U.S. history.
Human rights abuses, once committed primarily by repressive governments, are increasingly carried out in the corporate interest. In the global marketplace, it is easier than ever to hide abuses in developing countries from the consumers on the other side of the world. Energy companies might pay off militias to gun down local activists, factories might poison the farmland, air or water of the communities in which they do business. Most often, the people who do the hardest work - sewing garments, mining for precious metals, building the prisons and dams - are the ones most vulnerable to abuse and exploitation.
Chevron, once part of the Standard Oil empire, has grown over the past quarter century into the world’s fourth largest petroleum company, thanks to a series of ambitious acquisitions: Gulf Oil in 1984, Texaco in 2001 and Unocal in 2005. The purchase of Texaco brought with it a massive environmental lawsuit that has dragged on for more than a decade. This is only one of a host of controversies surrounding Chevron’s environmental and human rights record around the world.
Family Dollar, a discount "dollar store" chain, was formed in 1959, when it opened its first outlet in Charlotte, North Carolina. Over 40 years later, Family Dollar is still headquartered in Charlotte, but has at least 6,785 stores in 44 states with over 50,000 employees.
Critics of Family Dollar and other dollar stores say they exploit store employees by calling them "managers" (even though they do not oversee other employees) to avoid laws requiring paid overtime.
Family Dollar ranks No. 305 in the U.S. Fortune 500.
The JSW Group is a $3.7 billion worth conglomerate with interests in steel, energy, minerals and mining, aluminium, infrastructure and logistics, cement and IT. The Group projects its power sector company, JSW Energy, as one of its companies to watch out for. JSW's projects, notably its power plants in Jaigad, in the Western Indian state of Maharashtra, and its plans to set up aluminium smelters and mines in the tribal tracts of Andhra Pradesh have attracted significant resistance from local communities, including farmers.
The Madras Aluminium Company Ltd. (MALCO) is part of Vedanta Resources, a London listed metals and mining major with Aluminium, Copper and Zinc operations in UK, India and Australia. MALCO is a primary Aluminium producer in South India with operations encompassing mining, refining, smelting and power generation.
How has corporate social responsibility developed in the mobile phone industry in recent years and are social and environmental standards improving as fast as the product applications? This briefing will include a follow up on the ‘High Cost of Calling: Critical Issues in the Mobile Phone Industry’ report4, with the focus mainly on sourcing policies and practices and supply chain responsibility of the major brand companies.
This report examines the ICT sector, a relatively young sector that often portrays itself with a clean image of highly skilled jobs and ‘clean rooms’ where professionals work in a controlled and dust-free environment.
Poor working conditions exist in factories owned by subcontractors for Acer and Fujitsu Siemens Computers. Employees work long days in an unhealthy environment for a wage that is insufficient to live on. Such is the situation revealed in research conducted by the Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO) on the ICT hardware sector.
SOMO conducted research in nine factories in China and the Philippines that supply parts for Acer and Fujitsu Siemens Computers. Working conditions in these factories are simply appalling.
One of the key companies in the family promoted Jindal Group, JSPL has grown from a moderately performing company in the steel sector to the largest sponge iron manufacturer in the world. Steered by Naveen Jindal, a Member of Parliament (2009), and one of four heirs to the business founded by his father, O.P. Jindal, JSPL realised a 2008 turnover in excess of $2 billion (Indian Rupee 100 billion. US $1 = Rs.
Ford, one of the great names of the auto industry, has played a major role in shaping both the horizons of everyday life and the conditions of toil on the job. Founder Henry Ford transformed automobiles from an amusement for the wealthy to a conveyance for the common person, while in his workplaces he introduced mass production on an unprecedented scale. Ford fell behind General Motors in the 1920s and experienced decades of management instability.