We are all in this together: benefits and challenges of business-NGO collaboration on women’s rights for sustainable development
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International corporations have become as powerful as many states around the world, but they often remain detached from respecting, protecting, and fulfilling human rights. In this thesis, engagement of a broader range of business stakeholders in an intersectional, interdisciplinary, and holistic approach to gender equality is considered as key to positive progress towards sustainable development and the eradication of the feminisation of poverty. Therefore, this thesis will examine the emerging phenomenon of business-NGO partnerships and their potential to tackle women’s rights issues in business and contribute to reaching Sustainable Development Goals using the United Nations Guiding Principles as the main tool. Basic characteristics of corporate-NGO interactions and relations, their development from conflictual to complementary and from tactical to strategic, will be analysed from organisational sociology and feminist epistemology perspectives, with an ambition to facilitate the establishment of cross-sector partnerships, overcome communication barriers, and help to deepen their future cooperation. These goals can only be achieved through understanding of the benefits, challenges, and risks resulting from this kind of cross-sector cooperation on the fulfilment of women’s rights related to business, which are thus the major investigation interests of this thesis.