About the Seminar

The International Seminar on Human Rights and Business held annually by Homa has become a reference in Latin America for the meeting of different sectors of society, researchers and activists who face Human Rights violations perpetrated by transnational corporations. The event also counted with the participation of the OEIWG Chairperson in different occasions. Initially organized at the Federal University of Juiz de Fora, Homa headquarters, the event has also been held in the cities of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, in partnership with the Conselho Nacional de Direitos Humanos (CNDH), the University of São Paulo (USP), the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) and the Friedrich Ebert Foundation - Brazil (FES-Brazil).

The theme debated in the event went through a lot of changes given the expansion of the discussion on the Treaty on Human Rights and Business at the UN, besides the launch of three versions of the Draft of the document, and the public and institutional debate in several countries and instances around the globe, especially in the countries of the Global South, which are generally more affected by the actions of transnational corporations. In an attempt to continue this process of strengthening civil society and the dissemination of knowledge about Human Rights and Business, especially in Brazil and Latin America, and opening space for the definition of these developments, Homa proposes the VII International Seminar on Human Rights and Business. We believe that in the current global context, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and amidst the uncertainties we live in, the event becomes even more necessary. Observing the orientations of the responsible organizations, the VII Seminar will be held totally online on the 11th, 12th, 13th and 16th of November 2020.


The Seminar will count with the presence of several national and international specialists on the subject, coming from the academic universe as well as from non-governmental organizations and representatives of governmental and multilateral agencies.
The panelists will be announced soon.

Event Schedule

November 11th

09:45 am | UTC -3
Opening of the International Seminar

10:00 am | UTC -3
Panel - Transnational companies, corporate crimes, human rights and nature and corporate impunity
The table seeks to present the researchers and their respective researches in line 3 of the same name, coordinated by Prof. Manoela Roland (Homa - Brazil) and Prof. Berónica Mercado (Corporación Universitaria del Caribe - Colombia), which is part of the CLACSO WG: Lex Mercatoria, Derechos Humanos y Democracia, coordinated by Prof. Dr. Roland. Adoración Guamán (Universitat de Valéncia - Spain and Homa - Brazil) and Prof. Caroline Proner (Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro - Brazil and Universidad Pablo de Olavide - Spain)

Moderation: Prof. Berónica Narváez Mercado - Corporación Universitaria del Caribe | Colombia

- Prof. Adoración Guamán - Universitat de Valéncia | Spain
- Prof. Cayetano Nuñez - Universidad de Valencia | Spain
- Nívia Mônica Silva - Universidad Pablo de Olavide (Spain) and Federal Public Ministry | Brazil
- Pablo Ignacio Rodríguez Vasco - FLACSO - Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales | Ecuador
- Prof. Charlotth Back - Federal Rural University of Rio de Janeiro | Brazil


2:00 pm | UTC -3
Panel - Intersectional perspectives of Human Rights and its defense against violations
How to overcome the challenge of multiple crises? The indigenous, quilombola, and gender perspectives in unison for the realization of Human Rights, which are in the sum of the voices of those who struggle for their rights every day

Moderation: Larissa Ambrosano Packer - Grain Latin America | Brazil

- Dinamam Tuxá - Articulation of the Indigenous Peoples of Brazil - APIB | Brazil
- Sandra Andrade - National Coordination for the Articulation of Rural Black Quilombola Communities (CONAQ) | Brazil
- Fernanda Hopenhaym - PODER | Mexico
- Débora Duprat - Retired Federal Sub-attorney general | Brazil


7:00 pm | UTC -3
Panel - Human Rights Violations and Mining Activity in Rio Doce
The tormenting relationship between Human Rights and Development in the context of mining activity: How can the participation of the people affected in the process of integral reparation of violations be effected?

Moderation: Prof. Tatiana Ribeiro - GEPSA and Federal University of Ouro Preto | Brazil

- Prof. Maria Luiza Alencar Feitosa - Homa and Federal University of Paraíba | Brazil
- Prof. Luciana Tasse - CRDH and Federal University of Juiz de Fora - Governador Valadares Campus | Brazil
- Felipe Fayer Mansoldo - Homa | Brazil
- Prof. Bruno Milanez - PoEMAS and Federal University of Juiz de Fora | Brazil
- Prof. Cristiana Losekann - Organon and Federal University of Espírito Santo | Brazil

November 12th

9:00 am | UTC -3
Panel - How to effect the primacy of Human Rights over Free Trade Agreements and their privileges granted to transnational companies?
Positions and strategies in relation to the European Union-Mercosur Agreement, legal and parliamentary instruments and the relationship with the Binding Treaty

Moderation: Maureen Santos - FASE, Carta de Belém Group, PUC-Rio and Plataforma Socioambiental | Brazil
Lucia Ortiz - Friends of the Earth Brazil and Homa | Brazil

- Prof. Julián Tole Martínez - Universidad Externado de Colombia and Observatorio Latinoamericano de Derechos Humanos y Empresas | Colombia
- Natalia Carrau - REDES | Uruguay
- Luana Hanauer - Friends of the Earth | Brazil
Gonzalo Manzullo - CSA-TUCA | Argentina


2:00 pm | UTC -3
Simultaneous Working Groups
I - International Agenda Human Rights and Business: strategic litigation and legal instruments;
II - National Public Policies on Human Rights and Business;
III - Violations involving vulnerable groups and communities in the field of Human Rights and Business;

November 13th

10:30 am | UTC -3
Panel - The Sixth Session of the OEIGWG and the negotiation process of the International Treaty on Business and Human Rights at the United Nations
A review of the development of the binding instrument and the first impressions of the Sixth Session of the OEIGWG in Companies and Human Rights that will take place from 26 to 29 October: the need for a perspective from the Global South

Moderation: Prof. Manoela Roland - Homa and Federal University of Juiz de Fora | Brazil

- Ambassador Emilio Izquierdo - Chairman of OEIGWG for the Negotiation of the Treaty on Business and Human Rights at the UN | Ecuador
- Daniel Uribe - South Centre | Switzerland
- Prof. David Bilchitz - University of Johannesburg and University of Reading | South Africa
- Ana Maria Suarez Franco - FIAN International | Ecuador
- Erika Mendes - Environmental Justice JA! | Mozambique


4:00 pm | UTC -3
Panel - Advances and setbacks in the Second Draft of the Treaty on Business and Human Rights
Points currently in focus in the discussion of the global agenda: the importance of monitoring value chains, prior and informed consultation with people, obligations for companies and their effective legal accountability, among other current topics in the discussion of the document.

Moderation: Maria Fernanda Goretti - Homa | Brazil

- Prof. Justine Nolan - UNSW and New York University Stern Center BHR | Australia
- Ivan González - Confederación Sindical de las Américas - CSA - TUCA | Uruguay
- Vandria Borari - Indigenous Leadership of the Borari people | Brazil
- Alberto Villareal - REDES | Uruguay
- Kinda Mohamadieh - Third World Network | Switzerland

November 16th

3:00 pm | UTC -3
Panel - The construction of public policies in Human Rights and Business: dialogues between Parliament and Civil Society
Possibilities of building local public policies on human rights violations by large corporations: how can the Legislative Branch act to build a local agenda with society?

Moderation: Gonzalo Berrón - Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES) | Brazil

- David Llistar - Global Justice | Spain
- Tchenna Maso - Movement of Dam-Affected People (MAB) | Brazil
- Andressa Soares - Homa | Brazil
- Hugo Yasky - Chair of the Commission of Human Rights and Guarantees of the Chamber of Deputies of the Argentine Parliament | Argentina
- Verónica Mato - Chair of the Human Rights Commission of the House of Representatives of the Uruguayan Parliament | Uruguay
- Hélder Salomão - Chair of the Commission on Human Rights and Minorities of the Chamber of Deputies | Brazil



6:00 pm | UTC -3
Closing of the International Seminar

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Register for the Seminar

The event is free of charge and will issue a 25h certificate for those who have presence in at least 75% of the spaces (Panels and GTs).

Submission of papers until November 3rd

Homa – Human Rights and Business Centre

Homa - Human Rights and Business Centre, was created in 2012 at the Law School of the Federal University of Juiz de Fora - Brazil, with the support of the Ford Foundation - Brazil, as an academic centre for research and extension, with the objective of producing qualified knowledge and providing academic-legal advice on human rights violations perpetrated by business, focusing on the protection of human rights and the centrality of those affected, for civil society and the government.

Different from the main nomenclature in that field of study " Business and Human Rights ", we call ourselves the Centre for Human Rights and Business, exactly because we believe that the theme should be regarded under the logic of these rights protection. Therefore, those must come before the business in this legal, political and academic discussion.

We develop research lines around "Human Rights and business", informing, raising awareness and training actors of the society on the theme, besides offering academic-legal advice for the action of the organized Civil Society and Government. For this purpose, our action is supported by other academic entities, organized sectors of the Civil Society and even the State. Having a bigger and closer relation to the testimony of the affected by Human Rights violations.

In that scenario, Homa has been following since 2013 the international agenda on Human Rights and Business, developed at the United Nations, which includes the negotiation of an International Treaty on the theme at The Human Rights Council. The Centre was present in all sessions of negotiation of the binding instrument, as well as in several informal consultations, and ordinary sessions of the Council. Homa is part and advise the “Global Campaign to Dismantle Corporate Power and Stop Impunity”, which has a network of more than 200 social movements and organizations throughout the world linked to it. In 2017, we were invited, on the figure of the coordinator Manoela Roland, as experts on the field to speak to members of the Working Group at the 3rd Negotiation Session at the UN in Geneva.

In the same way, Homa worked along with the Conselho Nacional de Direitos Humanos – Brazil on the formulation of the draft of the Resolution No. 05, of 12 March 2020, of the CNDH. The resolution considers new National Guide Lines for a Public Policy on Human Rights and Business. The resolution, created in a democratic process and with the participation of the Civil Society, was used as a counterpoint to the Federal Decree No. 9.571/2018 and with a demonstration of the democratic creation of a normative mechanism of public policy on the theme in Brazil. Also, regarding the national context, Homa is part of a research team called Rede de Pesquisa Rio Doce, acting on the case of the Fundão dam collapse in Mariana, Minas Gerais. The group along with the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights also filed a suit on the case. Besides that network, the Centre also integrates the Working Group on Human Rights and Business of the Brazilian Federal Prosecution Service.