A consensus has emerged that corporations have societal and environmental responsibilities when operating transnationally. However, how exactly corporations can be held legally accountable for their transgressions, if at all, is less clear.

This volume inquires how regulatory tools stemming from international law, public law, and private law may or may not be used for transnational corporate accountability purposes. Attention is devoted to applicable standards of liability, institutional and jurisdictional issues, and practical challenges, with a focus on ways to improve the existing legal status quo. In addition, there is consideration of the extent to which non-legal regulatory instruments may complement or provide more viable alternatives to these legal mechanisms. The book combines legaldoctrinal approaches with comparative, interdisciplinary, and policy insights with the dual aim of furthering the legal scholarly debate on these issues and enabling higher quality decision-making by policymakers seeking to implement regulatory measures that enhance corporate accountability in this context. Through its study of contemporary developments in legislation and case law, it provides a timely and important contribution to the scholarly and sociopolitical debate in the fastevolving field of international corporate social responsibility and accountability.

part 1|85 pages

General perspectives

chapter 1|15 pages


ByIvo Giesen, Liesbeth Enneking, François Kristen, Lucas Roorda, Cedric Ryngaert, Anne-Jetske Schaap

chapter 3|22 pages

National Contact Points under OECD’s Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises

Institutional diversity affecting assessments of the delivery of access to remedy
ByKarin Buhmann

chapter 4|26 pages

Unpacking accountability in business and human rights

The multinational enterprise, the State, and the international community
ByLarry Catá Backer

part 2|58 pages

Accountability through international law mechanisms

chapter 6|21 pages

Justice without borders

Models of cross-border legal cooperation and what they can teach us
ByJennifer Zerk

chapter 7|19 pages

Ignorantia facti excusat?

The viability of due diligence as a model to establish international criminal accountability for corporate actors purchasing natural resources from conflict zones
ByDaniëlla Dam-de Jong

part 3|72 pages

Accountability through domestic public law mechanisms

chapter 8|23 pages

From “too big to be governed” to “not too big to be responsible”?

ByFrançois Kristen, Jessy Emaus

chapter 9|22 pages

Holding businessmen criminally liable for international crimes

Lessons from the Netherlands on how to address remote involvement
ByMarjolein Cupido, Mark J Hornman, Wim Huisman

part 4|62 pages

Accountability through domestic private law mechanisms

chapter 11|20 pages

Limited liability and separate corporate personality in multinational corporate groups

Conceptual flaws, accountability gaps, and the case for profit-risk liability
ByPaul Dowling

chapter 12|20 pages

The Swiss popular initiative on responsible business

From responsibility to liability
ByNicolas Bueno

chapter 13|20 pages

The mismatch between human rights policies and contract law

Improving contractual mechanisms to advance human rights compliance in supply chains
ByMartijn Scheltema

part 5|18 pages


chapter 14|16 pages

Accountability, international business operations, and the law

The way forward
ByCedric Ryngaert, Ivo Giesen, Lucas Roorda, Liesbeth Enneking, François Kristen, Anne-Jetske Schaap