The Regulation of International Supply Chains

The Regulation of International Supply Chains (RISC): Lessons from the Governance of OHS in the Bangladesh RMG Industry

The Project
RISC investigates the regulation of International Supply Chains in the Bangladesh Ready-Made Garment (RMG) industry with respect to occupational health & safety and wider social sustainability.  Whilst a multitude of regulatory initiatives emerged after the 2013 Rana Plaza disaster, little is known about what approaches are most effective, what the variety of efforts mean for the industry overall, or how lessons may be applied more systematically in Bangladesh and beyond.  Therefore, the objectives of RISC are to:  

  1. Identify attributes of effective sustainability governance
  2. Provide new academic and practical knowledge on the governance of sustainability in international supply chains
  3. Contribute to local capacity-building, policy development and company practices for social sustainability in Bangladesh and beyond

The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) serve as a thematic framework for RISC, and in particular, Goals 12: Responsible consumption and production, 8: Decent work and economic growth, and 17: Partnerships for the goals. 

To fulfill its objectives, the outcomes and contributions of RISC are threefold. 

  1. Understand the landscape and scope of organizations and governance initiatives for social sustainability in the BD RMG industry, and their interactions.
  2. Determine the attributes of effective governance for social sustainability in the Bangladesh RMG industry, and of their applicability to supply chains more broadly.
  3. Make findings accessible to practitioners and enhance the capacity of local researchers, practitioners, and organizations by facilitating the growth of locally-driven, evidence-based solutions.

A unique approach of the project is that of capacity building, working from the premise that sustainable, systemic change is best accomplished when locally-driven and managed.  The findings and evidence from the research will be used both to generate new academic knowledge as well as to formulate practical recommendations for the industry.  RISC will also seek to identify and support local organizations to uptake the findings and recommendations via the provision of ‘micro-grants’. 

RISC is affiliated with CBS Sustainability and the Centre for Business and Development Studies.  It is a 2-year project, running from June 2019 to May 2021.

Project Team
RISC adopts a collaborative approach by working in partnership with academic and practice institutions.  It brings together researchers from CBS, BRAC University Bangladesh, and Tufts University (USA) with the Danish Ethical Trading Initiative (DIEH), a non-profit industry multi-stakeholder initiative.  The project team consists of:

Additionally, RISC utilizes an advisory board consisting of leaders from both academia and practice in Europe, the USA and Bangladesh to oversee and guide its work.

Academic paper:
Erin Leitheiser (2021) ‘How domestic contexts shape international private governance: The case of the European Accord and American Alliance in Bangladesh’ Regulation & Governance.

- PDF icon RISC Flyer
- RISC report: PDF icon Early Impacts of Coronavirus on Bangladesh Apparel Supply Chains
- RISC practitioners' report: PDF icon Improving Social Sustainability in Supply Chains

The RISC Inventory
The RISC inventory contains all the projects that were gathered and assessed as a part of the RISC Project. If you wish to use the inventory for academic purposes and wish to access methodology of the inventory, please contact Professor Jeremy Moon (

The Grant
RISC has been made possible through a Window 2 grant from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, administered by Danida Fellowship Centre.

For further information about RISC, please contact Jeremy Moon (

The page was last edited by: Centre for Sustainability // 04/04/2022