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TBGI Working Paper 12

A System of Transnational Business Interactions: The Case of the Living Wage

TBGI Working Paper 12 cover image


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David J. Doorey



The subject of transnational business governance (TBG) interactions is an emerging field of study. These interactions are complex, involving multiple public and private actors crossing vast geopolitical spaces, with sometimes shared, but often conflicting interests. This complexity makes TBG interactions both an exciting new field of inquiry for scholars, but also an extremely challenging one. In these early days of theory development, it is useful to engage in a mapping exercise that will help scholars identify and test the relationships between the many inputs and outputs of TBG interactions. This paper contributes to this exercise by proposing and developing a systems framework for analyzing TBG interactions. This new systems framework is demonstrated by reference to the complex story of the ‘living wage’ standard in private governance schemes targeting labour practices in global supply chains.


Transnational business governance, Employment standards, Living wage, Systems theory


Due to a typesetting error, this working paper was identified incorrectly as TBGI Working Paper 11 on the original cover page. The correct number is Working Paper 12.