The Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute (SPERI) based at the University of Sheffield, in the U.K., conducted a series of interviews with experts and practitioners.
In one interview, a former director of CSR at a U.S. retailer, painted a bleak picture of the sector: "Within the social compliance world, it is now standard operating understanding that audits don’t work to achieve change within organizations."
The authors claim that supply chain audits are "ineffective tools for detecting, reporting, or correcting environmental and labor problems in supply chains."
The supplier audit industry, the report argues, “is ‘working’ for corporations, but failing workers and the planet.” For example, in 2013, just months before the collapse of Bangladesh’s Rana Plaza factory, in which hundreds of workers lost their lives, the facility passed a compliance audit.
Timely, incisive articles delivered directly to your inbox.