What is a code of conduct

Codes of conduct

(international) codes of conduct

1. Term: Compilation of standards, which define rules for desirable behavior, especially for international companies. These rules are not part of international law, but rather should be understood as recommendations. They are usually adopted on a voluntary basis in the form of a declaration or charter with a strong programmatic character.

2. Reasons: Codes of conduct serve to eliminate contradictions and to close gaps between the respective national forms, in particular of company, trade and labor law. This is intended to strengthen the control potential over international companies. A bridging and harmonization function is to be ascribed to the codes of conduct.

3. Systematics: Codes of conduct can be categorized according to their area of ‚Äč‚Äčapplication, their regulatory content, their content of sanctions and the character of the normative institution.

4. Examples: In 1976, for example, the United Nations passed "Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises", which represent a code of conduct based on fundamental principles for investment relationships in the member states. In addition, the "Global Compact" of the United Nations has existed since 1999, the aim of which is to promote "Corporate Social Responsibility" and "Good Corporate Citizenship" in order to achieve sustainable ecological and social development worldwide.