We're starting a movement we hope other business schools will adopt.

Founded in 2013, the NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights is the first center dedicated to human rights at a business school. Led by Founder and Director Michael Posner - who served in the Obama Administration as Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor - the Center advances a pro-business, high standards model. Our staff members have backgrounds in public policy, law, scholarship, and journalism. We're united in our belief that companies should be profitable and competitive while benefiting the people who make their success possible. From the heart of the world's financial hub in New York City, we are helping to write a new playbook for business and human rights, renegotiating the responsibilities corporations have to the people and communities they touch. 

At NYU Stern, we develop people and ideas that transform the challenges of the 21st century into opportunities to create value for business and society. Our Center for Business and Human Rights is the embodiment of that mission and demonstrates that profit and principle can co-exist.
— Peter Henry, Dean Emeritus, William R. Berkley Professor of Economics and Business, Leonard N. Stern School of Business



Michael Posner


Michael Posner

Director, Center for Business and Human Rights
Jerome Kohlberg Professor of Ethics and Finance, Business and Society

Michael Posner is the Center's Director and the Jerome Kohlberg Professor of Ethics and Finance at NYU Stern. From September 2009 until March 2013, he served in the Obama Administration as Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor at the U.S. State Department. From 1978 to 2009, he was the Executive Director and the President of Human Rights First, a U.S.-based human rights advocacy organization.

As Assistant Secretary of State, Michael traveled to more than 40 countries where he represented the U.S. government on a wide range of human rights issues. He has played a major role in shaping U.S. policy from inside and outside of government on issues ranging from refugee and asylum law and policy, national security and human rights, Internet freedom, and business and human rights. Michael played a key role in proposing and campaigning for the first U.S. law providing for political asylum, which became part of the Refugee Act of 1980, as well as the Torture Victim Protection Act, which was adopted in 1992.

Michael holds a JD from the University of California, Berkeley Law School, and a BA with distinction and honors from the University of Michigan.


Paul M. Barrett

Deputy Director

Paul M. Barrett

Deputy Director, Center for Business and Human Rights

Paul Barrett joined the Center as deputy director in September 2017 after spending more than three decades as a journalist and author focusing on the intersection of business, law, and society. Most recently, Paul worked for 12 years for Bloomberg Businessweek magazine, where he served at different times as the editor of an award-winning investigative team and a writer covering topics such as energy and the environment, military procurement, and the civilian firearm industry. From 1986 to 2005, he wrote for The Wall Street Journal, serving as the newspaper’s Supreme Court correspondent and later as the page one special projects editor.

Paul is the author of four critically acclaimed nonfiction books, the most recent of which are GLOCK: The Rise of America’s Gun (2012), a New York Times Bestseller, and LAW OF THE JUNGLE: The $19 Billion Legal Battle Over Oil in the Rain Forest and the Lawyer Who’d Stop at Nothing to Win (2014). Both of those books have been optioned for Hollywood movies.

Since 2008, Paul has served as an adjunct professor at New York University School of Law. He co-teaches a seminar called “Law, Economics, and Journalism,” in which students learn to analyze social issues with the tools of those three professions.

Paul has a J.D. from Harvard Law School and an A.B. from Harvard College.


Victoria Anderson

Administrative Assistant

Victoria Anderson

Administrative Assistant

Victoria is the administrative assistant to the Center where she focuses on prioritizing and managing workflows. Prior to working at NYU Stern, she was a department coordinator at Conde Nast where she supported senior executives in the research and digital analytics department. She holds a BA in International Studies from American University. If you would like to find out more information about the Center, please contact Victoria at: vanderso@stern.nyu.edu


Dorothée Baumann-Pauly

Research Director

Dorothée Baumann-Pauly

Research Director

Dorothée Baumann-Pauly is the Center’s research director. She oversees the Center's research activities, including development of academic publications, case studies, the Center’s forthcoming textbook, and other teaching resources. She holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Zurich (Switzerland) and MA degrees in management and political science from the University of Constance (Germany) and Rutgers University of New Jersey. She joined NYU Stern in June 2013.

Dorothée has split her career between academia and corporate social responsibility (CSR) practice. As a project officer and consultant for the Fair Labor Association, she helped revise the organization’s core program by developing assessment and impact measurement methodologies. She also oversaw supply chain auditing activities and supported workers’ representation projects in China. Dorothée worked as MFA-Forum country program manager at the London-based thinktank AccountAbility, managing multi-stakeholder dialogues in Bangladesh, Morocco, and Lesotho.

Dorothée teaches CSR, Business and Human Rights and Business Ethics at HEC Lausanne (Switzerland) and NYU Stern. In 2013, she published a book entitled Managing Corporate Legitimacy – A Toolbox (Greenleaf Publishing). You can contact Dorthée by email at dbaumann@stern.nyu.edu.


April Gu

Associate Director

April Gu

Associate Director

April Gu oversees the Center’s operations, including the Center’s integration into the broader university, resource stewardship, and ability to implement cutting-edge programming for students, companies, and other stakeholders. Prior to the joining the Center, she practiced law in the Singapore and New York offices of Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP, where she focused on the financing of infrastructure and energy projects throughout Southeast Asia, Latin America and the United States. She is a former Fulbright Research Scholar who conducted research on economic development in Beijing, China.

April is a graduate of NYU Stern and the NYU School of Law, where she participated in the International Human Rights Clinic and won numerous human rights and public service fellowships for her work.

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Kerin K. McCauley

Senior Associate Director

Kerin K. McCauley

Senior Associate Director

Kerin McCauley oversees strategic planning and leads the Center’s efforts to encourage university endowment funds to provide greater opportunities to investment firms owned by women and under-represented minorities. Kerin worked at NYU Stern for five years prior to joining the Center, first in Faculty Affairs, and most recently in the Admissions Office. Before coming to Stern, Kerin worked with the Faculty Administration team at Harvard Business School.

Kerin has an MBA from NYU Stern with specializations in Sustainable Business & Innovation and Law & Business. She holds a BA with honors from College of the Holy Cross and a Design Certificate from Massachusetts College of Art.


Casey O'Connor

Senior Program Manager

Casey O'Connor

Senior Program Manager, Investment
Sani Scholar in Residence

Casey O'Connor leads the NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights' efforts to develop indicators of human rights leadership for investors. She was the principal author of the Center’s 2017 report, Putting the ‘S’ in ESG: Measuring Human Rights Performance for Investors, which examined how prominent sustainability measurement frameworks define and evaluate social performance. Casey is now developing a new approach to social measurement, looking first at the apparel industry.

Prior to joining the Center, Casey held various research and advocacy positions focused on human rights and economic development. She has a J.D. from NYU School of Law and a B.A. from the University of Washington. You can contact Casey by email at coconnor[at]stern.nyu.edu.


Auret van Heerden

Senior Adviser

Auret van Heerden

Senior Adviser

Auret van Heerden has 40 years experience in labour and human rights issues worldwide. He began as a student leader and anti-apartheid activist in South Africa before being recruited by the ILO to work on the Programme of Action against Apartheid. In 1994 he was appointed Labour Attache at the South African Mission to the UN in Geneva. He returned to the ILO to head the Action Programme on Social and Labour Issues in EPZs. In 2001 he joined the Fair Labor Association and served as its President and CEO for 13 years. He now consults and teaches.

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Justine Nolan

Senior Visiting Scholar

Justine Nolan

Senior Visiting Scholar

Justine Nolan is a senior visiting scholar at the Center, an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law at the University of NSW (Australia), and the Deputy Director of the Australian Human Rights Centre. Her research focuses on accountability for corporate violations of human rights. She is a co-author of an international human rights textbook (The International Law of Human Rights, Oxford University Press, 2011) and teaches human rights law and related courses on development, globalisation and business and human rights. Prior to UNSW, she worked as the Director of the Business and Human Rights program at the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights (now Human Rights First). During this time Justine advised companies and NGOs on effective strategies to protect human rights in the corporate sphere and was closely involved in establishing the Fair Labor Association.

Justine has worked in both public interest and private legal practices. She was a member of the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade & Ausaid's Human Rights Grants Scheme Expert Panel (2009-2013) which provided financial support for community-based projects to promote and protect human rights in developing countries. Justine has given guest lectures at a number of leading universities including Yale, Stanford, the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Adelaide, the University of Sydney, the University of Hong Kong and Columbia University. She is an editor of the Australian Journal of Human Rights, the Human Rights Defender, and the Journal of Business and Human Rights (Cambridge University). See Justine's complete list of publications.


Advisory Council

Lew Kaden
Retired, Vice Chairman, Citigroup

Mark Angelson
Chairman, IIE Scholar Rescue Fund and Selection Committee

Janet Band

Renee Beaumont
Partner, Generation Investment Management

Tom Bernstein
President and Co-founder, Chelsea Piers

Daniel Doctoroff
Director, Sidewalk Labs

Richard Edelman
President and CEO, Edelman

Ken Feinberg
Partner, Feinberg Rozen, LLP

Kerry Kennedy
President, Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights

Harold Koh
Sterling Professor of International Law, Yale Law School

Orin Kramer
Director, Arden Holdings Limited

Peter Leahey
Vice President, Goldman Sachs

Barbara Marcin
Former Fund Manager

Camille Massey
Founding Executive Director, Sorensen Center for International Peace & Justice

Ray McGuire
Head of Global Banking, Citigroup

Amol Mehra
Managing Director, North America, Freedom Fund

Will Millberg
Dean, The New School

Jacqueline Novogratz
Founder and CEO, Acumen

Mayur Patel
Head, Strategic Development Initiatives, Econet Wireless

Betty P. Rauch
Betty P. Rauch Marketing/Communications

Great Neck Richman
President, Richloom Fabrics Group

Christina Sass
Co-Founder and COO, Andela

Kabir Sehgal
NYT Bestselling Author

Deborah Spar
Professor, Harvard Business School

Angela Sun
Former Global Head of Strategy and Corporate Development, Bloomberg LP

Laura Tyson
Director, Institute for Business and Social Impact, Haas School of Business