Evaluation of the Dutch RBC Agreements 2014-2020


KIT was contracted by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs to evaluate and review 11 sector-level multi-stakeholder agreements on responsible business conduct (RBC agreements).


The objective of this evaluation was to gain an insight into the extent to which the RBC agreements advance the implementation of due diligence by companies in conformity with the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. The insights gained from this evaluation feed into the renewal of the Dutch policy on international responsible business conduct scheduled for autumn 2020.

RBC Agreements

Multi-stakeholder RBC agreements—between sector associations, companies, government, and civil society—aim to promote international responsible business conduct and result in positive impacts for people negatively affected by business operations in global value chains.

The evaluation covers 11 RBC agreements in the following sectors: coal, garments and textile, banking, forestry, gold, food products, insurance, pension funds, metals, floriculture, and natural stones/TruStone. The oil and gas, chemical and electronics sectors were analysed to understand their progress on due diligence according to international RBC guidelines in the absence of an RBC agreement.

The evaluation follows a theory-based approach focused on validating the underlying Theory of Change of the different RBC agreements by gathering evidence on the achieved outputs, outcomes and examples of impact. This evidence was gathered from 134 stakeholder interviews and a review of secondary data.