Electronics Watch Webinars
Electronics Watch is pleased to offer a series of free webinars on socially responsible public procurement, intended primarily for public sector buyers. See below for the next in the series. Further down you can access previous webinar recordings.
Jenny Chan, Assistant Professor of Sociology and China Studies, Hong Kong Polytechnic University.
Aneesh Manjunath, Coordinator for Legal Research and Training, Cividep India.
Kristin Tallbo, Sustainability Strategist, SKL Kommentus Central Purchasing Body, Sweden.
Angus Warren, Chief Executive, Advanced Procurement for Universities and Colleges.
Is there Freedom of Association in Public Sector Supply Chains? Does it Matter? June, 2021
In the electronics industry, a very small minority of production workers are members of legitimate democratic trade unions. Fewer still benefit from collective bargaining agreements. Many union leaders fall victim to harassment and intimidation to stop them from claiming their human rights at work. Some have been killed. Yet, the freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining are fundamental labour rights and universal 'enabling' human rights. Without these rights, it is difficult for workers to defend themselves against workplace abuses, protect their health and safety, and strive for decent working conditions.
Watch the first of a two-part discussion on the freedom of association in the electronics industry and why unions matter to public procurement. Learn about the vital role of trade unions in workplaces and society. Find out how they can help public buyers ensure social and environmental responsibility in supply chains. We will hear from workers who benefit from a functioning trade union and discuss the challenges electronics unions face.
Mary Ann Castillo, Secretary General, Metalworkers Alliance of the Philippines (MWAP), and President, Nexperia Workers Union
Gemma Freedman, International Officer, International Unit, UNISON
Bruno Gentil Periera, General Secretary, Electronic Industry Employees Union Western Region Peninsular Malaysia (EIEUWRPM)
Idawati binti Idrus, Deputy General Secretary of Electronics Industry Employee Union Southern Region Malaysia (EIEUSR) and Co-Chair of IndustriALL Malaysia women's committee
Kan Matsuzaki, Director, ICT, Electrical & Electronics, Shipbuilding and Shipbreaking, IndustriALL Global Union
Protests and Precarity - Can Public Procurement Drive Change? February, 2021
Worker protests over pay disputes at electronics suppliers in India and China at the end of last year briefly directed the world's attention to precarious work in electronics supply chains. In the case of Wistron in Bangalore, India, 90% of the workforce were contractual workers who were paid late and less than they had been promised. This case well illustrates why workers often tell Electronics Watch that their precarious work situation is what they would most like to change.
In this public webinar, researchers and Electronics Watch monitoring partners discuss the issues stemming from contractualization and other forms of precarious work, especially in the current context of the pandemic. Electronics Watch affiliates explore these issues from a procurement angle, looking at the cycle of production and procurement in the industry, and how their own purchasing practices can help drive solutions.
Public Procurement in Times of Crisis and Beyond - Resilience Through Sustainability
The global Covid-19 crisis has provided ample proof of the need for resilient supply chains. One of the central factors of resilience is sustainability based on social and environmental standards verified through independent monitoring. Occupational health and safety keeps production going without endangering workers. Positive employment relations and a constructive social dialogue are central to a workplace environment to which workers want to return and contribute. Safe and environmentally sound production facilities minimise risk of ramp up after a time of shut down. The current global health crisis has set off a massive economic crisis with tax revenues decreasing and social spending increasing. Public procurement is asked to deliver cost efficiencies and this demand will increase. How can a long-term strategy towards higher efficiencies be based on strong responsible procurement standards aiming for resilient supply chains?
With this online event Electronics Watch seeks to contribute to the discussion on how to strengthen social and environmental responsibility in public procurement, conduct effective supply chain engagement, and support meaningful worker participation even and perhaps especially during crisis. 12 expert presenters from the fields of public procurement, monitoring and auditing share their ideas on how public procurement can support more resilient supply chains based on strong social and environmental standards. You can watch a recording of this webinar by clicking on the thumbnail to the left, or access the slides here.
The Impact of Covid-19 on Electronics: from mining, to manufacturing and public procurement, June 2020
This webinar takes you behind the headlines of the Corona crisis to shine a spotlight on the impact on workers in different parts of the electronics supply chain, from miners and mining communities in Latin America to manufacturing workers across Asia. We will take you from the struggles of workers to the challenges public buyers face in Europe and how they are trying to engage their ICT supply chains to protect workers' rights and safety. The webinar features four experts on these topics: Charlotte Christiaens (CATAPA, Belgium), Kim Thi Thu Ha (Center for Development and Integration, Vietnam), Mike Kilner (London Universities Purchasing Consortium, UK) and Omana George (Electronics Watch, Hong Kong).
Regional Risk Assessment, Vietnam, November 2019
In this webinar you will hear about labour rights risks in Vietnam based on the recently released Electronics Watch Regional Risk Assessment of the Electronics Industry in Vietnam. Electronics Watch monitoring partner, Center for Development and Integration (CDI) in Vietnam set up a team of local researchers to conduct the research for this risk assessment. They highlight risks in the areas of freedom of employment, freedom of association, working hours, and health and safety. Guest speaker: Ha Kim, Managing Director, Centre for Development and Integration, Vietnam.
Worker Voices in Public Procurement, June 2019
In this webinar, participants will learn what it means for workers to have a voice in their workplace, and explore the topic of "worker voice" in public procurement. Can public buyers define procurement criteria to strengthen worker voices in their supply chains? How would they monitor compliance with such criteria? See also our policy brief on Worker Voices. Guest speakers: Gopinathan Parakuni (Cividep, India) and Kathleen McCaughey (Region Stockholm, Sweden).
Migrant Worker Recruitment in Malaysia, May 2019
In this webinar you will learn about migrant worker recruitment issues in Malaysia, including risks of debt bondage and forced labour, and why this matters to public buyers. Presenters discuss findings from recent Electronics Watch research in the electronics sector in Malaysia, the Electronics Watch Guidance for Remediation and Prevention of Migrant Worker Recruitment Fees and Related Costs in Public Procurement, as well as the legal and historical context of migrant worker recruitment in Malaysia. Guest speakers: Joseph Paul, Director, Tenaganita, Malaysia and Andy Hall, Migrant worker rights specialist, United Kingdom.
What public procurers can do to protect the health and safety of workers in their electronics supply chains, September 2018
In this webinar you will learn about Organizational Health & Safety (OHS) in the electronics industry, hazards that workers face, including the use of toxic chemicals, and how to address root causes of these problems. You will hear how an Electronics Watch affiliate is using public procurement to protect workers' health and safety, and the important role of worker-driven monitoring in this process. Guest speakers: Sanjiv Pandita - Asian Network for the Rights of Occupational and Environmental Victims (ANROEV) - Hong Kong and Pauline Göthberg - Stockholm County Council – Sweden.
The Link Between Employment Conditions and Suicide, June 2018
In this webinar you will learn about specific workplace conditions that increase risk of worker suicides in Chinese electronics factories, and what industry, the Chinese government, and public buyers can and should do to mitigate this risk. The webinar is based on the report by Economic Rights Institute and Electronics Watch: The Link Between Employment Conditions & Suicide*, which seeks to precisely identify the link between employee suicides and specific employment conditions such as income, shift work, speed and intensity of the work, overtime, time off, respect, and discipline and violence. Webinar participants are guided through the main arguments, conclusions and recommendations from the study, and ask their questions directly to the guest speaker and author of the report, Dimitri Kessler, from the Economic Rights Institute, China.
*The Link Between Employment Conditions and Suicide is a thorough and scientific study of internet sources on 167 cases of electronics workers committing or trying to commit suicide, including 28 cases of "suicide protests" (where, with one exception, workers do not kill themselves), on site worker surveys at 44 electronics suppliers, and offsite interviews with 252 workers at four suppliers where there have been multiple suicide cases. It also looks at censorship and the issue of post-suicide entitlements, and offers concrete suggestions for government, business, and public buyers.
SRPP- Extending to Extractives in the Electronics Industry, April 2018
In this webinar you will learn about human rights abuses in the mining sector of the electronics supply chain that affect workers, their families, and their communities. The webinar focuses on the most important metals for the electronics industry and explores existing initiatives that address human rights issues in the mining sector. Presenters discuss how to address the human rights issues as part of a program on socially responsible public procurement and highlight the experiences of University of Edinburgh, the first higher education institution in the UK to adopt a formal conflict minerals policy. Guest speakers: Irene Schipper, Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO), Netherlands and Liz Cooper, Department for Social Responsibility and Sustainability, The University of Edinburgh.
Knowing & Showing Your Supply Chain, February 2018
This is the first of a series of Electronics Watch webinars, free and intended primarily for public buyers. With conflicting definitions and methodologies, transparency talk in procurement can be confusing. In this webinar, featuring Robert Stumberg, Professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center, we look at what transparency really is and why it's so important. We break down the concept into clear and manageable parts - 'How can you know your supply chain?' and 'How can you show your supply chain?', and explore how Electronics Watch can support both of these steps.