This Blog Essay site devotes every February to a series of integrated but short essays on a single theme. The Ruminations Series in 2009 produced a series of aphoristic (ἀφορισμός) essays, meant to provoke thought rather than explain it. The hope was that, built up on each other, the series would provide a matrix of thoughts that together might lead the reader in new directions. Ruminations continue to be produced form time to time. For 2010, this site introduced a new series--Business and Human Rights. The series took as its starting point the issues and questions raised by John Ruggie, the United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) on business and human rights, in a global online forum.
For 2011, this site introduces a new series of integrated essays--Developing a Coherent Transnational Jurisprudence of Ethical Investing: The Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund Ethics Council Model. The object of this series to to consider the work of the Ethics Council of the Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund. The thesis of this series is this: The Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund (NSWF ) investment program is grounded in the application of a set of Ethical Guidelines adopted by the Storting (the Norwegian Legislature) and enforced through an Ethics Council charged with determining whether a company should be excluded from investment by the NSWF. The work of the Ethics Council has produced the beginnings of a coherent jurisprudence of ethics for corporate investment. That jurisprudence may contribute significantly both to the development of transnational social norm standards and affect the way domestic corporate law is understood. This is Part XXVII of the series.
Where can more information be obtained about the size of divestments for companies where it was not listed in the recommendation? (i.e. tobacco and a few others)
Why was Rio Tinto excluded two years after Freeport since the violation in question is over the same mine of which they were both part owners?
Was Siemens ever excluded from the Fund? Is it still under observation status?
Why were various Council members changed in 2008/09 and what is the typical cycle for Council members?
As noted on Page 13 of the 2009 Annual Report the Council has a "Watch-list" is this interpreted as companies under observation?
There has been skepticism about adding other states to the criteria for being excluded (in the same manner Burma was), are there any plans to do this? (i.e. the DRC)
With what appears to be insurmountable evidence against the company through sources that the Council has cited before, why was Total never excluded?
Was the Minister of Finance overstepping their bounds by putting Siemens AG under observation instead of taking the Council's recommendation of excluding the company? (Cite Section 3 Article 1 of the Ethical Council's Guidelines)
Other than the Monsanto recommendation has there been any other cases of "active ownership"?
Is the Council looking to add any additional type of exclusions?
Was Rheinmetall ever excluded from the Fund?
Does the Council look at companies who are invested in equities more than companies that are invested in fixed-income assets?
As the Fund looks into developing into real estate, will the Council be participating much in that field?
Currently is the Council only looking at the Ottawa Treaty as their basis for excluding companies in violation of manufacturing anti-personnel landmines and the Oslo Convention for companies manufacturing cluster munitions, or are they taking into consideration other criteria?
How do people get nominated for the Council of Ethics?
Does the Council look at any source who writes to the Council on allegations against a company?
The Council's website states that they employ staff to translate in many different languages, does language pose a problem when evaluating a company?