Institute of Contemporary Observation


Institute of  Contemporary Observation


To create opportunities for the future.

Major Projects

  • CSR consulting and ethical auditing
  • Study on labor rights and migrant workers
  • Smart growth for employees
  • Worker’s hotline
  • Sustainable solutions for social compliance and productivity

Major Achievements

  • 2006 - 2011, Consultation for UN Secretary General on Business and Human Rights on mandate of Special Representative Prof. John Ruggie
  • December 2003, “Best Organization for Labor Rights Protection” Award issued by Southern Window Magazine (南方窗)
  • March 2005, “Best Case for China’s Sustainable Development” Award issued by Shell and Economic Observer Magazine (经济观察报)

Major Funders

Ford Foundation, Oxfam Hong Kong, UC Berkeley, World Bank

Major Partners

DEG, PROPARCO, Fuji Xerox, Burberry, Primark, The Body Shop


ICO comprises a think tank and an action group. Due to our professional expertise and independent status we are able to gain a thorough understanding of current trends within the labor market and of social movements as well as to carry out concrete actions. Most of our activities are conducted inside factories that are part of global supply chains.