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Promoting responsible electronics supply chains through public procurement

Promoting responsible electronics supply chains through public procurement

Martin-Ortega, Olga and Outhwaite, Opi (2015) Promoting responsible electronics supply chains through public procurement. [Working Paper]

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Abstract

• The electronics industry supply chain is particularly complex, with many companies involved in the manufacturing process and most of them far removed from the end user. Events involving well known electronics brands have highlighted the exploitative and unsafe conditions under which many workers in the supply chain operate.
• Public procurement contracts worldwide are estimated to be worth one-thousand-billion euros annually and account for 16 per cent of GDP in the European Union. Because of their considerable buying power, public authorities, through their public procurement contracts, hold the potential for significant leverage in social and sustainability issues.
• Within the European Union, public procurement contracts are subject to EU rules which aim to ensure non-discrimination and transparency in the procurement process. These rules also determine the extent to which social considerations are permitted within the procurement process.
• The best opportunity to introduce social considerations is within the contract performance stage of the process, which allows the buyer to specify the conditions to be performed once the contract has been granted.
• Developing contract performance conditions which apply throughout the supply chain is challenging for several reasons. Two approaches to using such conditions are available: the use of cascading contract conditions and a contractor-led due diligence approach.
• The due diligence approach is suggested as a preferable option since it is less onerous in overall terms, is a responsive model and therefore may be better suited to addressing supply chain problems. It is also more practicable from a contractual perspective.
• The necessary features of an effective contract performance condition include requirements for the disclosure of factory locations, determination of labour conditions and standards to be required, provision for access to factories and monitoring and for remediation and the imposition of penalties.

Item Type: Working Paper
Uncontrolled Keywords: public procurement, electronics industry, global supply chain
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities
Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities > Department of Law
Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities > Law & Criminology Research Group
Last Modified: 14 Dec 2016 10:51
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/14147

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