Australian Corporate Accountability Network of Australia

Beyond Guidelines Symposium Program


Beyond Guidelines: Future Directions
for Business & Human Rights in Australia

An Australian Corporate Accountability Network Symposium, 16th November 2018.

University of New South Wales, Sydney
UNSW Law (Kensington campus), Ground Floor, Room G23.

jointly Funded by Monash University, RMIT University and the University of New south wales


8.30am to 9.00am


9.00am to 9.15am


  • Welcome to Country: Dr Peter McKenzie.

  • Welcome to the University of NSW and the Australian Institute of Human Rights: Associate Professor Justine Nolan.

9.15am to 9.45am

Business & human rights: global developments and future opportunities for Australia

  • Opening address: Professor Surya Deva, ViceChair, UN Working Group Business & Human Rights.

    Professor Deva will discuss new emerging trends in business and human rights around the world and opportunities for Australia to become a leader in this area.

9:45am TO 11:15am

Modern Slavery: new models for ensuring supply-chain accountability

  • Moderator: Amy Sinclair, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre.

  • Panellists: Sheung So,  President, Electronics Watch, Hong Kong; Dermot O’Gorman, CEO, World Wide Fund for Nature Australia; George Robertson, Organiser, National Union of Workers; Shelley Marshall, Senior Research Fellow, RMIT University.

    In this session panellists at the cutting edge of addressing modern slavery in supply chains in the electronics, fishing and agricultural sectors will discuss the models and strategies they use to address forced labour.

11.15AM TO 11:45am

Coffee Break

Towards Enforceable Human Rights Due Diligence: ground-breaking developments in Europe and lessons for Australia

  • Moderator: Sarah McGrath, Australian Human Rights Commission.

  • Panellists: Sandra Cossart, Director, Sherpa, France; Professor Florian Wettstein, Director of the Institute for Business Ethics, University of St Gallen, Switzerland; Cristina Tebar-Less, Head of the Responsible Business Conduct Unit of the OECD, France; Associate Professor Justine Nolan, University of New South Wales.

    In this session panellists will discuss new legislative initiatives in France and Switzerland to introduce mandatory human rights due diligence requirements for large corporations and reflect on their applicability for Australia.

11.45am TO 1.15Pm

1.15pm TO 2.15Pm

Lunch Break

2.15pm TO 3.45Pm

Making Remedy Real: achieving redress for communities impacted by Australian corporate activity overseas & in Australia

  • Moderator: Luke Fletcher, Director, Jubilee Australia.

  • Panellists: Millicent Shungube, representative, Greater Phola Ogies Women’s Forum, South Africa; Dr Ruth Saovana-Spriggs, Bougainville People’s Research Centre, PNG; Allan Mogerema, Paga Hill community leader, PNG; Emily Dwyer, Co-ordinator, Canadian Corporate Accountability Network.

    In this session, panellists from communities directly impacted by Australian corporate activity will discuss their campaigns to address abuses and what accountability means to them. Panellists will then reflect on the changes needed to Australian law and policy to ensure more effective redress and accountability by business.

3.45pm TO 4.00Pm

Afternoon Tea

4.00pm TO 5.00Pm

Business and Human Rights in Australia: where to from here?

  • Moderator: Serena Lillywhite, CEO, Transparency International Australia.

  • Panellists: Professor Sarah Joseph, Castan Centre for Human Rights, Monash University; Keren Adams, Director of Legal Advocacy, Human Rights Law Centre; Andrea Maksimovic, Associate Director, Australian Council of Trade Unions; Vanessa Zimmerman, Chair, Global Compact Network Australia; Brynn O’Brien, Executive Director, Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility.

  • Closing remarks

    In this session, panellists will sum up and reflect on discussions from the day and ideas on pathways to advance business & human rights in Australia.