In this book review, the author critiques Levi’s Children: Coming to Terms with Human Rights in the Global Marketplace by Karl Schoenberger. Schoenberger depicts the struggle by Levi Strauss & Co. to abide by its principles regarding workers’ rights after its decision to relocate some manufacturing operations abroad, an effort that he concludes was ultimately unsuccessful. In exploring this topic, he discusses the human rights issues confronting Levi Strauss & Co. and other U.S. multinationals and the increasing pressure exerted by the public for such companies to operate in a socially responsible manner. Schoenberger’s primary contribution to the growing literature on corporate social responsibility lies in his emphasis on the need for an international solution involving greater voluntary cooperation between non-governmental organizations and multinationals. The author notes that there are some gaps in the book, including a lack of any legal analysis on such important topics as the type and nature of the barriers to integrating human rights concerns into the global operations of multinational enterprises, the means for eliminating such barriers and the consequences for business and society stemming from failure to bridge the gap between profit-making and social responsibility.
Wagner, Constance Z., Corporate Social Responsibility and the Multinational Enterprise (November 13, 2014). George Washington International Law Review, Vol. 33, No. 1063, 2001.