News and Events

    TADA 9 in Berlin

    From September 30 – October, 6 2013 the 9th meeting of the "Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility" took place in Berlin.

    Information on the program are available here.


    TADA 8 at University of Toronto

    From January 28 – February, 2 2013 the 8th meeting of the "Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility" will take place at the University of Toronto.

    Information on the program are available here.



    Focus workshop on business and human rights

    According to international law, states are the main duty bearers of human rights. However, in many areas, weaker states are not capable of protecting human rights effectively. Here, multinationals are often more powerful; and the argument has been brought forward that they might be able to step in and foster human rights. At the same time, gross human rights violations and instances of complicity are reported in the media every day.

    The workshop (June 7-8, 2012), organized by the human rights group within TADA (Nicole Janz, Adriana Orellana, Rocio Robinson, and Jordi Vives i Gabriel)  discussed these issues and developed a research agenda. Results and Reports are available here.




    TADA 7 at Beuth Hochschule Berlin

    The 7th TADA meeting took place at the Beuth Hochschule in Berlin. The program is available here.




    TADA 6 at Montréal University

    The 6th meeting of TADA took place at Montreal University in Canada. The programs are available here and here (conference part).



    TADA 5 at St. Gallen University, Switzerland

    The 5th meeting of TADA took place at St. Gallen University in Switzerland. 

    The programs are available here and here (conference part).




    Fourth meeting of the Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility, October 2010 in Montréal, Canada

    From October 11-16 2010 the fourth meeting of the Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility took place in Monréal.

    The meeting included a multifaceted programm with presentations of the participants as well as theoretical and practical input from various scientists and practitioners.

    As a highlight and possibility to recover from their own presentations, the PhD students were given the great oppotunity to reflect the content presented by Marc-André Guertin (Directeur général, Association canadienne des réserves de biosphère) in the beautiful unique surrounding of Mont-Saint-Hilaire in famous canadian "indian summer". As a result bio diversity as one of the upcomming topics in corporate responsibility became one of the most discussed topics in the evennings. 

    To look up the the program with all presentations, please click here.


    The next TADA will be in St.Gallen, Switzerland from April 28th to May 3rd, 2011.

    Workshop on CSR and global governance - Berlin, 18-19 June 2010

    Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has been being institutionalised over the past years through various standards, norms and regimes. As the regulation of CSR is taking shape, scholars from various disciplines start to study this subject under different terms.

    Further information 

    Informations for participants 


    Third meeting of the Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility, February 2010, Montreal and Toronto, Canada

    Keep the Balance. Report on the Third „Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility”
    From February 8th to February 13th, 2010, the third Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility (TADA) took place in Montreal and Toronto, Canada. Twice a year, the conference organized by Dr. Thomas Beschorner (Universities of Oldenburg and Montréal) and supported by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) offers a forum for academic exchange to 18 PhD-Students from Germany and Canada, who are preparing their doctoral thesis on issues related to Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility.
    The students come from diverse academic fields such as management, law, sociology, culture studies, history and psychology. Most of them had already presented their work at the previous TADA sessions and gave updates on its state of art. The projects revealed different perspectives on CSR. From an institutional point of view, private standards as ISO 26000, SA 8000 and industry-related norms were discussed. Presentations about respectful leadership, self-organization and internal promoters of normative issues highlighted the company perspective. Sabine Mirkovic (European University Viadrina, Frankfurt/ Oder), for instance, focused on the changing role of business, co-providing public goods. From a third perspective, Imke Schmidt (Essen University) reflected the responsibility of consumers for sustainable development, exemplifying the Carbon Footprint initiative.
    An important CSR issue in Canada are mining companies’ impacts on society and environment. Claire Woodside (Carleton University Ottawa), for example, analyzed the evolution of conflicts between local communities and mining companies. Gerardo J. Munarriz (University of British Columbia) stated the necessity of internationally binding norms and mechanisms to hold multinational companies accountable for human rights violations. This was illustrated by the clashes between mining companies and indigenous communities in the Peruvian Amazon region.
    On the second day, the TADA-participants worked on a Case Study on a German company with Christian background facing problems due to internal power struggles and a lack of consistent values. Five groups identified the causes of the crisis and presented solutions, based on their theoretical backgrounds. The recommendations included the adoption of a Code of Conduct offering orientation for decision-making, a clear positioning regarding the Christian values and changes to the corporate and leadership structure in order to make them more transparent.
    Luc Bres (HEC Montreal) organized a lunch discussion with members of the “Groupe de recherche interdisciplinaire en développement durable” (GRIDD-HEC) for the third day. Several statements from TADAists opened a debate on the relationship between sustainability and CSR and on how these concepts can be communicated to students in management studies. Further, the voluntary nature of CSR was questioned, and the participants discussed if CSR activities necessarily lead to win-win situations or if trade-offs have to be made. Brazilian participants enriched the debate, arguing that the promotion of sustainability should not be reduced to governments and companies, but also relies on civil society mobilization.
    The stay in Montreal concluded with an excursion to the Mont Royal, where participants exchanged their ideas during a “Walk and Talk” and went figure skating on the Lac des Castors – keeping the balance. The TADA continued with the joint three-day workshop “TADA meets CBERN” at York University, Toronto.
    Thea Renner/ Maike Wiehmeier

    TADA meets CBERN

    International PhD Workshop on Politics and Human Rights at York University, Toronto
    On February 12th and 13th, 2010, a joint workshop on “Politics and Human Rights: Theoretical Perspectives in Business Ethics” took place at York University, Toronto. For the first time, members of the German-Canadian “Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility” (TADA), chaired by Dr. Thomas Beschorner, met researchers from the “Canadian Business Ethics Research Network” (CBERN) headed by Dr. Wesley Cragg. CBERN was created in 2004 to promote knowledge sharing and partnerships between universities, private and public institutions across Canada.
    The workshop started with a “World Café”, during which the 30 PhD-students and professors had the possibility to get to know each other and to link their personal and scientific interests, creating a topographical map. Four renowned experts in the field of Business Ethics had also been invited to present part of their research.
    Prof. Dr. Andreas Scherer (University of Zurich, Switzerland) explained his theory of legitimacy. He called legitimacy a key concept in the CSR debate because it constitutes the main motivation for companies to engage in CSR. In his theory, Prof. Scherer distinguishes three legitimization strategies used by corporations in order to gain societal acceptance: strategic manipulation, isomorphic adaptation and moral reasoning. Given the fact that the instrumental nature of the first two strategies contrasts with the normativity of moral discourse, Prof. Scherer himself raised the question of how companies can apply these strategies simultaneously without being contradictious. 
    Prof. Dr. Bryan Husted (Schulich School of Business, York University) held a conference on “Social Equity and the Firm: Conceptualization and Measurement”. Claiming for an externality approach of CSR, he stated that firms have to internalize their externalities (e.g. social costs) to avoid societal harm. Corporations influence within-group as well as between-groups equity by distributing wealth and income inside and outside the firm. Besides, CSR can help to enhance social equity as it increases transparency and trust.
    Human Rights were in the center of Prof. Dr. Florian Wettstein and Dr. Wesley Cragg’s presentations. Analyzing the public responsibilities of private actors, Prof. Wettstein (University of St. Thomas, USA) claimed for a shift from indirect to direct human rights obligations of companies. According to him, an ascription of responsibility beyond causality and individual involvement is needed. This can be reached through a capability approach, in which companies address human rights issues according to their core competences. Dr. Wesley Cragg (York University, Toronto) concluded the workshop with a talk on the compatibility of sustainability and human rights frameworks.
    Outside the workshop, the participants had the occasion to go out for dinner and discover the city and nightlife of Toronto together. Both CBERN and TADA members expressed their willingness to establish a closer collaboration in the future to continue exchanging their ideas on Business Ethics.
    Thea Renner/ Maike Wiehmeier


    Workshop on business ethics education

    TADA members Sabine Mirkovic and Thomas Beschorner co-organized an international workshop on business ethics education. Invited speakers also included Claire Woodside and Kristin Vorbohle (both TADA). Two reports are available: in English and in German

    Second meeting of the Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility, October 2009, Kassel and Berlin, Germany

    From October 12-17 2009 the second meeting of the Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility took place in Kassel and Berlin.

    The second TADA included:

    •  student presentations about their work, followed by critical discussions,
    • a business (role) game,
    • fireplace conversations with Prof. Hans Nutzinger, University of Kassel,
    • an international workshop on "Business Ethics: On Actors and Arenas

    The programme is available here.

    First Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility, January 2009 in Montreal, Canada

    From January 19-24 2009 the Transatlantic Doctoral Academy on Corporate Responsibility took place at Université de Montréal.  The Academy is interdisciplinary oriented and open to PhD students of all academic disciplines and from all German and Canadian universities.

    The first TADA included:

    • student presentations about their work, followed by critical discussions,
    • the “CSR Practitioner Forum” to discuss and reflect on concrete problems,
    • an international workshop on “Business Ethics. International Perspectives”

    The program is available here.


    Detailed Reports about the first TADA
    First TADA, Montreal 2009