Caroline Rees


Caroline worked as a lead advisor to the former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Business and Human Rights, Professor John Ruggie, from 2007 to 2011 and as the Director of the Governance and Accountability Program at the Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative at Harvard Kennedy School from 2009 to 2011. Caroline advised the SRSG's mandate across a broad range of issues, and led research related to access to remedy as well as work on human rights in supply chains. She was closely involved in the drafting of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. 

Caroline has worked with a broad range of companies, governments civil society organizations, and international organizations on issues ranging from human rights due diligence to the design and improvement of grievance mechanisms, to corporate culture and human rights, to reporting on human rights performance.   She has also published extensively on the issue of grievance mechanisms and is a regular speaker at conferences, workshops and universities on the UN Guiding Principles.   Caroline is a Senior Fellow with the Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative at Harvard Kennedy School.

Caroline previously spent 14 years with the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office. From 2003 to 2006 she led the UK's human rights negotiating team at the UN and chaired the UN negotiations on business and human rights that led to the creation of the SRSG's mandate. Her prior foreign service career covers Iran, Slovakia, the UN Security Council and the European Union. Caroline has a BA Hons from Oxford University and an MA in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School, Tufts University.