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Compensating for the Government’s Failures? NGOs and the Civil Regulation of Shell in Nigeria

Stappenbeck, Niklas LU (2010) SIMT07 20101
Master of Science in Global Studies
Graduate School
Abstract (Swedish)
This paper aims to enhance the understanding of the extent to which non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are able to shape the civil regulation of transnational corporations (TNCs), in addition to civil regulations’ potential to compensate for failed state-regulations. For this purpose, the paper examines the case of Shell’s civil regulation in Nigeria, where the oil-industry is effectively left unregulated by the state. The paper is informed by social-constructivist theories, which are rather optimistic of NGOs’ and civil regulations’ capabilities, but also by more critical approaches. The study is based on NGO-reports and interviews which are analysed with qualitative research methods. It is found that although NGOs can force Shell to... (More)
This paper aims to enhance the understanding of the extent to which non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are able to shape the civil regulation of transnational corporations (TNCs), in addition to civil regulations’ potential to compensate for failed state-regulations. For this purpose, the paper examines the case of Shell’s civil regulation in Nigeria, where the oil-industry is effectively left unregulated by the state. The paper is informed by social-constructivist theories, which are rather optimistic of NGOs’ and civil regulations’ capabilities, but also by more critical approaches. The study is based on NGO-reports and interviews which are analysed with qualitative research methods. It is found that although NGOs can force Shell to address certain negative externalities to its operations, the company is largely able to control the extent of NGO-influence and how the externalities are regulated. While Shell allows for some NGO-influence, it neither lets NGOs co-determine the concrete regulation of its operations, nor monitor them. Moreover, Shell’s civil regulation is found to be highly unreliable in mitigating harmful operation-externalities. The reasons for this seem to be Shell’s rather instrumentalist conception of civil regulation, its lack of accountability to NGOs and its unwillingness to take over responsibilities it assumes to be lying with the state. (Less)
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author
Stappenbeck, Niklas LU
supervisor
organization
course
SIMT07 20101
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
corporate social responsibility, civil regulation, NGOs, Shell, Nigeria
language
English
id
1613029
date added to LUP
2010-06-29 14:55:46
date last changed
2010-06-29 14:55:46
@misc{1613029,
  abstract     = {This paper aims to enhance the understanding of the extent to which non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are able to shape the civil regulation of transnational corporations (TNCs), in addition to civil regulations’ potential to compensate for failed state-regulations. For this purpose, the paper examines the case of Shell’s civil regulation in Nigeria, where the oil-industry is effectively left unregulated by the state. The paper is informed by social-constructivist theories, which are rather optimistic of NGOs’ and civil regulations’ capabilities, but also by more critical approaches. The study is based on NGO-reports and interviews which are analysed with qualitative research methods. It is found that although NGOs can force Shell to address certain negative externalities to its operations, the company is largely able to control the extent of NGO-influence and how the externalities are regulated. While Shell allows for some NGO-influence, it neither lets NGOs co-determine the concrete regulation of its operations, nor monitor them. Moreover, Shell’s civil regulation is found to be highly unreliable in mitigating harmful operation-externalities. The reasons for this seem to be Shell’s rather instrumentalist conception of civil regulation, its lack of accountability to NGOs and its unwillingness to take over responsibilities it assumes to be lying with the state.},
  author       = {Stappenbeck, Niklas},
  keyword      = {corporate social responsibility,civil regulation,NGOs,Shell,Nigeria},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Compensating for the Government’s Failures? NGOs and the Civil Regulation of Shell in Nigeria},
  year         = {2010},
}