CCIC - Flash
A semi-monthly electronic bulletin

April 30, 2010

1. New Resources on Investment, Development and Human Rights


What is a Canadian Foreign Investment Protection and Promotion Agreement (FIPA)? What are the implications of such investment treaties for development, poverty, human rights and the environment? Canada has been pursuing many of these bilateral investment agreements with developing countries in recent years.  As part of the Global Economic Justice Program, CCIC has prepared a new resource: Bilateral Investment Treaties: A Canadian Primer . A longer briefing paper, Evaluating Canada's 2004 Model Foreign Investment Protection Agreement in Light of Civil Society Concerns, considers the Canadian FIPA model from a development perspective.

2. Africa Matters


In the coming months Canada’s foreign policy, including an agenda for the June 2010 G8 and G20 Summits must give priority to actions that promote human rights and end poverty and injustice in Africa.  Africa Matters: Time for a Renewed Commitment to Economic and Social Justice for Africa, by CCIC’s Africa-Canada Forum, outlines what a renewed commitment to economic and social justice for Africa would look like.

3. Americas Policy Group Report on Coup d’état in Honduras


Honduras: Democracy Denied, by CCIC’s Americas Policy Group, takes a critical look at the coup in Honduras, key issues for democracy and human rights, and Canada’s role. Specifically, the report reviews Canadian diplomatic efforts during the crisis and the role of Canadian investors and businesses operating in the country prior to and during the coup. The report also raises concerns about the ongoing human rights violations and impunity under the new Honduran authorities, including concerns about the process for a controversial Truth Commission. The report makes a number of recommendations to facilitate a return to a strengthened constitutional order, respecting the human rights and development needs of Honduran citizens.

Upcoming Events


4. Blogs and Live Chats on the Public Engagement (PE) Hub


Last month, CCIC launched an online network for public engagement, communications and fundraising practitioners. Currently, there are already over 130 members signed up for this free, dynamic, online space. Visit the PE Hub to sign up. Live online chats will take place on the PE Hub each Wednesday in May at 12:30pm-1:15pm (Eastern) including: May 5 –  Podcasting and reaching new audiences [CUSO-VSO], May 12 – Everything you need to know about The G8/20 People’s Summit [Ontario Council for International Cooperation] , May 19 – Good Practice in Campaigning and the Every One campaign [Save The Children], and May 26 –  Youth Engagement and the Multiplier Effect [Rights and Democracy] Note: The last session will be in French. To participate, contact Calla Barnett at 613-241-7007, ext. 354.

Ethics in a Flash


5. Dear Ms Ethics

Dear Ms Ethics: I sit on the Board of an organization that likes to put the position and company or organizational affiliation beside the name of their governing body members.  Considering I am not representing my work organization what are the ethical considerations of that practice?  Known


Dear Known: There are a few ethical issues to consider in this situation.  Transparency, i.e. showing the affiliation, provides important information about the interests of the governing body members.  In addition, being honest would mean clearly stating that you are not representing your employer. There are various methods organizations use to be transparent, without creating a sense of endorsement, association or obligation. Background descriptions of Board members provide the same information rather than naming positions directly beside the names.  Some organizations name “public members” as well as representatives, or add a footnote stating that "affiliation noted for information only".  There are also ethical considerations related to your work organization.  You should have a conversation with your employer about whether or not they want to be acknowledged and how.  You can’t be stopped from telling people where you work, but there is a potential conflict of interest situation at play if the values of the organizations are sufficiently different.  Talk openly to both organizations. Together you can work to ensure transparency, honesty and organizational integrity (S4.1 and S6.9) as well as to help prevent or effectively manage conflict of interest situations (S3.5).


If you have an item for Flash, send it by e-mail to Katia Gianneschi. Please note that Flash items should be no longer than one paragraph.


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