With apologies for cross-postings:
Please see below outline details regarding a new PhD collaborative studentship 
funding opportunity (in association with Electronics Watch), via the School of 
Geography at Queen Mary University of London and the ESRC London 
Interdisciplinary Social Sciences Doctoral Training Partnership.
We'd be grateful if you could bring this to the attention of potential 
Circuits of Global Labour Governance: Public Procurement and Labour Standards 
in the Global Electronics Industry

Academic Lead: Professor Adrian 
Smith<http://www.geog.qmul.ac.uk/staff/smitha.html>, QMUL

Co-Supervisor: Dr Gale 
Raj-Reichert<http://www.geog.qmul.ac.uk/staff/rajreichertg.html>, QMUL

Partner: Electronics Watch<http://electronicswatch.org/en>

Funding: LISS-DTP ESRC Collaborative Studentship, +3 (PhD) or 1+3 (MRes, 
followed by PhD)

Application deadline: 23 February 2018

Project description:

The globalisation of supply chains has created a governance deficit concerning 
working conditions in the world economy. Private-sector initiatives (corporate 
social responsibility and codes of conduct) face limits to improving labour 
standards. Yet, little attention has been paid to public sector attempts to 
regulate working conditions in global supply chains. An EU Directive on Public 
Procurement, however, allows state organisations to include clauses on labour 
standards in procurement contracts. In this context, this project will examine 
socially responsible public procurement of electronics hardware - an industry 
mired by serious labour violations - and focuses on the state as a regulator 
and buyer. The research will be carried out with Electronics Watch, a 
non-profit, non-governmental initiative which organises public sector buyers, 
provides tools to create effective market demand for decent working conditions 
(e.g. contract clauses), and monitors working conditions to ensure compliance 
in factories. The project will examine: how the EU Directive is being 
implemented by public-sector buyers in the United Kingdom; how the governance 
framework impacts lead firm and supplier relationships in the sector; and the 
experience of public procurement regulation as an emergent new relationship 
between the state, public sector governance and labour conditions in globalised 
production networks.

In terms of research methods, the project will involve key informant interviews 
with one or more public procurement agencies in the United Kingdom; a mapping 
of the legal framework for labour standards in public procurement, and its 
implementation in the contracts will be conducted; key informant interviews 
with one of the top three electronic brand firms at its headquarter location 
and with the brand firm's major suppliers in Malaysia; interviews will also be 
conducted with local monitoring organisations, trade unions, and workers in 
Malaysia; secondary data from audit and monitoring reports will be analysed to 
provide contextual data.

Applications must be made through the LISS DTP 
 Please do not hesitate to contact the academic leads Professor Adrian 
Smith<http://www.geog.qmul.ac.uk/staff/smitha.html> [a.m.sm...@qmul.ac.uk] and 
Dr Gale Raj-Reichert [g.raj-reich...@qmul.ac.uk] to discuss the details of the 
proposed project.

Adrian Smith | Professor of Human Geography & Dean for Research (Humanities & 
Social Sciences) | School of Geography | Queen Mary University of London | 
London E1 4NS | United Kingdom | t: 020 7882 8436 | e: 

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