Dr. Kernaghan Webb is an Associate Professor and Chair of Ted Rogers School of Management - Law and Business program. He teaches at the undergraduate and graduate levels on law and business issues, including corporate social responsibility and consumer protection. He is also the Director of the Ryerson University Institute for the Study of Corporate Social Responsibility. He holds Bachelors, Masters, and PhD degrees in law. Dr. Webb’s teaching, research and action has focused on innovative approaches to regulation, including the role of market-based non-coercive instruments (codes, standards, certification, voluntary approaches) in support of conventional state-based regulatory approaches (at the national and international level), and the regulation of the voluntary sector. The intersection of corporate social responsibility and the law is of particular interest, both in his research and teaching.
Dr. Webb has published extensively on regulatory and CSR issues, and his work on regulatory offences has been cited and followed by the Supreme Court of Canada. Dr. Webb has written on consumer protection/Competition Act issues. He has extensive background and experience in public policy, law, and regulation.
Areas of Expertise (5)
Standards Council of Canada, National Award of Excellence (professional)
Selected Media Appearances (5)
The future of business lies in sustainability
The Huffington Post
When it comes to implementing sustainability initiatives, global multinationals have "more power than the UN," says Kernaghan Webb, professor at Ryerson University's Ted Rogers School of Management in Toronto and founding director of the Ryerson Institute for the Study of Corporate Social Responsibility.
Still, too many companies in Canada and in the West are thinking of CSR in terms of risk management, if they are thinking about it at all, says Webb...
Joe Fresh, lawsuit must answer arms-length legal questions
“It is not much of a stretch to understand why the Bangladesh companies that manufactured the apparel could be held negligent,” said Kernaghan Webb, a professor of law and business at Ryerson University’s Ted Rogers School of Management and director of its Institute for the Study of Corporate Social Responsibility...
For today’s business students, profit is a means not an end
The Globe and Mail
"Business students these days don't want to enter the business world and work for a company that doesn't align with their values," explains Ryerson professor Kernaghan Webb...
Ottawa's responsible mining review awaited by NGOs
Kernaghan Webb, founder of Ryerson University's CSR Institute, said the government's hesitance "is out of respect for the sovereignty of other nations to resolve disputes about matters taking place within their borders."
"Do we know better than the Latin American country [about] what should happen within that country? Isn’t that colonialism?" he said in an emailed response to CBC News...
Canadian chocolate companies pressed to ethically source cocoa
ndustry action involves market-based certification programs such as Fair Trade, according to Kernaghan Webb, the director of Ryerson University's Institute of Corporate Social Responsibility.
"Essentially, upstream 'brands' can insist that suppliers meet certain environmental or social conditions, and they have the market power (and the infrastructure and the sophistication) to push change through their supply chain," Webb wrote in an email to CBC News...
Selected Articles (3)
The primary research question animating this article revolves around understanding how multinational mining corporations (MMCs) are responding to the twin pressures of globalization and localization to develop Corporate Responsibility (CR) approaches that apply at a global level and to their subsidiaries in various different jurisdictions, with particular attention being paid to the role of home, host and international factors in shaping the CR approaches of MMCs. The focus of attention is on the experience of Canadian MMCs in Latin America, using as an illustration the particular CR response of one Canadian MMC at its subsidiary Guatemalan mining operation. Research suggests that home country factors play an important role in shaping corporate CR approaches in a manner which take into account the circumstances extant at subsidiary operations in developing countries, as do transnational advocacy networks and global normative instruments...
Wesley S. Helms, Christine Oliver, Kernaghan Webb
In contrast to theory and research on institutionalized forms, less attention has been given to the creation of new institutional practices and arrangements. Researchers have recently argued that new institutional practices reflect settlements or truces reached by organizations embedded within fields but, to date, there is a dearth of research on how these settlements are negotiated. Based on a study of the formal negotiation of, and settlement on, ISO 26000, a new international standard defining the normative domain of corporate social responsibility (CSR), this research draws from a cognitive perspective to develop and test an organizational model of settlement on a new institutional practice...
The aims of this paper are: to explore the nature of political risk insurance (PRI) contracts as a form of regulation in the context of mining projects in developing countries; to examine how PRI providers factor corporate social responsibility (CSR) policies and practices of applicants in their initial decisions to provide PRI; to examine how CSR criteria are reflected in the terms of PRI contracts; to understand how failure to exercise good CSR practices by recipients of PRI affects insurance coverage; to shed light on how good CSR practices which minimize risk to companies and communities can be or are rewarded through PRI contracts; to identify opportunities for reform...