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International Developments in Labour and Human Resources Policy, and Labour and Globalization (IRE 1600 and IRE 1615)

This subject guide is meant to assist students, particularly those enrolled in IRE1600 and IRE1615 with research papers and assignments.

Hot Topics & Resources

Employment and Social Development in Europe 2017

From the European Commission's Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion: The annual review of Employment and Social Developments in Europe (ESDE) provides analytical support for EU and national policy actions in pursuit of the Europe 2020 employment and social objectives.

Globalization and HR/IR - Books Available Through U of T Libraries

    See the Tumblrwork&labour news&research for the latest on Globalization

Chinese Workers Foxconned

Chinese workers foxconned

In the news:

BBC One’s Panorama, December 18, 2014: “Apple’s Broken Promises” [video, 60min.] NOTE: A simple browser add-on, such as Hola, will enable you to watch this video. It’s free, requires a single click, and downloads in seconds.

Dissent Magazine, Spring 2013: "Chinese Workers Foxconned," by Ross Perlin

Apple is a member of the Fair Labor Association (FLA), which launched an independent investigation of Foxconn in 2012, as well as progress investigations to verify that Foxconn was following an action plan to correct problems.

"Fair Labor Association verifies ongoing progress at Apple supplier Foxconn"

Strikes in China

chinese workers

Bloomberg, May 6, 2014: Striking Cninese Workers

Labour Notes, August 13 2013: China's Young Workers Fight Back at Foxconn

Garment Industry - Books Available Through U of T Libraries

  See the Tumblr: work&labour news&research for the latest on Garment Industry or Clothing Industry.

Garment Industry - Selected Books in the CIRHR Library

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Bangladesh Garment Industry

Bangladesh garment industry

In the news:

Visit the CIRHR Tumblr for Bangladesh garment industry news and research

For the latest news on the Bangladesh garment industry, click here

Made in Bangladesh, by Tarannum Kamlani, Mark Kelley, Lysanne Louter and Aileen McBride (on CBC News: The Fifth Estate). Winner of Canadian Screen Awards 2015 for Best News or Information Program.

Brave New Films, November 26, 2017: "Walmart: The High Cost of Low Price" (video, 1:37:26). The film exposes Wal-Mart's unscrupulous business practices through interviews with former employees, small business owners, and footage of Walmart executives

Business and Human Rights Resource Centre Gives an employer perspective.

Links to organizations that support garment workers:

Labour Behind the Label is a campaign that supports garment workers’ efforts worldwide to improve their working conditions, through awareness raising, information provision and encouraging international solidarity between workers and consumers. Members include trade unions and their local branches, consumer organisations, campaign groups, and charities.


Clean Clothes CampaignThe Clean Clothes Campaign is dedicated to improving working conditions and supporting the empowerment of workers in the global garment and sportswear industries. The Clean Clothes Campaign is an alliance of organisations in 15 European countries. Members include trade unions and NGOs covering a broad spectrum of perspectives and interests, such as women’s rights, consumer advocacy and poverty reduction.


Better WorkBetter Work is an innovative partnership programme between the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC). Operational since 2009, the programme aims to improve both compliance with labour standards and competitiveness in global supply chains. Better Work aims to have a significant and direct impact through its own country-based programmes in the garment sector, as well as indirect impact through its influence, knowledge sharing and partnerships. Read current research and publications here.

The International Disaster Database can be used to produce Disaster Lists of industrial accidents by region or country from 1900.

Bangladesh Garment Industry - Selected books in the CIRHR Library

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Factory Labour in Cambodia

Factory labour in Cambodia

In the news:

For the latest news on Cambodian factory labour, click here.

Oka, C. (2015). Improving Working Conditions in Garment Supply Chains: The Role of Unions in Cambodia. Forthcoming in British Journal of Industrial Relations.Early view online version.

The Globe and Mail, May 30, 2013: "Underage labour finds a new frontier in Cambodia," by Mark MacKinnon and Marina Strauss

The Globe and Mail, May 16, 2013: "Ceiling collapse at Cambodian factory shows extent of safety issues," by Mark MacKinnon



Better Factories CambodiaBetter Factories Cambodia monitors factories, trains management and workers, and provides guidance and advice on factory improvements that help enterprises preserve profits while respecting workers' rights.

Better Factories Cambodia, April 11, 2013: "Twenty-Ninth Synthesis Report on Working Conditions in Cambodia’s Garment Sector," (22 pages, PDF)