This is the report on the GoodElectronics Annual Meeting held in Batam, Indonesia on October 7 – 9, 2017. The conference was held at a critical time for the global electronics movement. As the industry experiences enormous growth, it is increasingly to globalising production, using just in time supply chains, and practicing ‘employee free’ forms of precarious labour. Meanwhile, some production countries in the industry face ‘economic downgrading’, with little of the benefits accruing to the country and even less to workers. A rise in authoritarian government, crackdowns on NGOs and unions, and attacks on labour rights defenders is also a part of the current context.
The conference bought together 67 people from unions, NGOs and research institutions, from 14 countries and 45 different organisations, in order to create a strategy as a global network operating in this context. The GoodElectronics network has a vision of a global electronics industry characterised by adherence to the highest international human rights and sustainability standards. The Network is currently more than mid-way through an EC funded five-year programme and has achieved many successes. Yet, in order to develop the Networks influence, and a strategy capable of achieving our vision, the Network commissioned a Mid Term Review. The Review started at the end of July, and was a participatory process which aimed to undertake a participatory process in order to answer the following strategic questions on the future of the Network.
- Research Question 1. Update on what was done and what is still to be done to bring the Action to a good end.
- Research Question 2. Assess whether GE needs to prioritize specific demands to companies and the electronic industry. (Maintain its broad focus or prioritize specific topics or a specific life-cycle phase).
- Research Question 3. Prioritize specific activities as a Network? (e.g. research, organizing, capacity building, campaign, urgent appeals, multi-stakeholder initiatives, working with other Networks)
- Research Question 4. Open up the discussion for Sustainability of the Network: Prioritise the financial sustainability of the project, discuss options for the structure and legal status of the network and possibilities for the creation of a network.