The interrelations between developments in corporate social responsibility and the new generation of international investment agreements: can investment arbitration become a tool for promoting social responsibility?

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Hleihel, Arwa
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Taking into account the recent developments in corporate social responsibility (CSR) development, and CSR’s incorporation into recent international investment agreements, the question has been raised: can these CSR provisions fulfill the task of promoting CSR through investment law? In the first chapter of this dissertation, the developments in CSR and the functions it can fulfil as soft law in investment arbitration are discussed. The second chapter presents an overview of the evolution of bilateral investment treaties (BITs), a prominent aspect of investment law, from the classical notion of safeguarding investor protection, to the era of asymmetry in investment and dissonance in international human rights law, leading to the need for rebalancing the investor-host state relationship in BITs, inter alia by promoting corporate social responsibility as demonstrated in the Urbaser v. Argentina ward. In Chapter III, the integration of CSRs in IIAs in the last five years is summarised. Finally, in Chapter IV, the future implications of CSR integration in IIAs on investment tribunals’ decisions are discussed, in an attempt to answer the question: can investment law be a tool for promoting CSR?
Second semester University: University of Vienna
corporate responsibility, social responsibility, international investments, arbitration