Project Agenda

Stage 1 of our agenda is complete. Share your ideas with us as we act on Stages 2 and 3.

Stage 1. Better rules for resource trade.

The Clean Trade policy brief is the result of years of academic research and international consultations with stakeholders. It sets out responsible, feasible reforms that governments of resource-importing countries can undertake right now, singly or together:

a. Structure trade policies to support public accountability over resources in all exporting countries;

b. Pass a Clean Trade Act that blocks business dealings with the world’s worst regimes;

c. Encourage trade partners not to deal with the worst regimes. Warn that trade duties may be imposed on partners that continue to deal with the worst regimes, the proceeds being held in Clean Hands Trusts for the people of the exporting countries whose resources are being stolen.

Clean Trade will further our long-term interests in national security and economic growth. These policies will also align our policies with our international obligations and our own deepest principles.

Stage 2. Civil society engagement and legal action. 

We will continue to coordinate our campaign with resource-related NGOs, and to work with legal experts on bringing cases to court. If you are in an NGO that is concerned with the damaging effects of global trade in natural resources, or if you are a legal scholar or practitioner who has ideas on effective litigation strategies, we want to hear from you.

Stage 3. Citizen power and shopper power.  

Informed citizens and shoppers can tell governments and corporations to stop the trade in stolen resources. Can you think of a smart social networking strategy to get your government’s attention? There are websites where we can offset our carbon emissions – should there be a website where we can offset our purchases of stolen resources? Should we set up a Wiki-site that documents corporate purchases of resources from dictators and rebels? We want your creative ideas about what we as individuals can do to make an impact.

Throughout these stages we will continue our basic research. For example, we have preliminary research showing that authoritarian and failed states are bad for the environment – that these countries have more local pollution and higher greenhouse gas emissions. If you know of good research on these or other relevant issues, please do get in touch.

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