Multi-stakeholder initiatives (MSIs) are the collaborations between businesses, civil society and other stakeholders that seek to address the negative impacts of business operating in our globalized economy. Over the last two decades, MSIs have been established to set standards in almost every major global industry, ranging from certifying the production of clothing and food, through to monitoring the extraction of oil and gas, or to establishing codes of conducts for internet companies regarding privacy and freedom of expression. By joining an MSI, companies or governments agree to adhere to that MSI’s standards.
However, key actors involved MSIs have begun to ask the question: how do we know whether, when, and how MSIs can be effective? Given the extensive resources dedicated to MSIs by civil society, governments, and companies, and the faith placed in these initiatives to protect and promote human rights by communities, MSI Integrity has been established to answer this pressing question.
The Institute for Multi-Stakeholder Initiative Integrity (MSI Integrity)’s mission is focused on fulfilling this need by examining and understanding the impact and value of voluntary initiatives that address business and human rights.
We partner with academic institutions, and local, national, and international organizations to research key questions surrounding the effectiveness of these initiatives; facilitate and share learning in the field; and develop tools to evaluate initiatives that apply current understandings of what makes initiatives effective from a human rights perspective. We share these tools openly and encourage others to use them to evaluate MSIs and voluntary initiatives. In all of our work, we take a particular interest in how initiatives include, empower, and impact affected communities.
MSI Integrity is committed to independence, transparency, and human rights principles. We strive for engagement and reflexive consultation with all stakeholders.
MSI Integrity is currently funded with general support from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Any specific funding received for individual projects is transparently disclosed within those projects and publications, and outlined online.
MSI Integrity is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt public charity organization. If you are interested in supporting our work, please contact us at info [at] msi-integrity.org.
Last updated: February 6, 2015