Case Study: Human Rights Impact Assessment, Oil and gas


A FTSE listed energy company wanted to adopt a revised human rights policy in line with the UN Guiding Principles and investor expectations.

twentyfifty were commissioned to undertake:

  • An organisational assessment of management systems and processes for supporting human rights at Group-level and within a selected business unit
  • An impact assessment of a major exploration programme in an East African country

Our role

The organisational assessment included:

  • A gap assessment of policies, systems, procedures and practice against the UN Guiding Principles
  • Engagement with senior-level stakeholders across the company
  • A review of the revised human rights policy
  • Development of an assurance framework and performance indicators to track progress on human rights at Group-level
  • A written report detailing findings and recommendations.

The impact assessment included:

  • Identifying and appointing local consultants to support the process
  • A desk review of the legal and regulatory environment
  • An assessment of the current realisation of human rights for people affected by company operations, including a conflict assessment
  • Identifying stakeholders and affected groups
  • Mapping the business unit’s activities
  • Undertaking a field trip, which included engagement with affected groups
  • Developing an analytical framework aligned with the UN Guiding Principles, to assess the results of the field trip and desk research
  • Developing a comprehensive impact register as a tool for use by the business unit, which identified potential and actual human rights impacts that the company causes, contributes to or is linked to
  • Writing a detailed report presenting the findings back to the business.


The project will enable the company to get a more precise understanding of the human rights context of the selected exploration programme. The company will build on the assessment as well as the gap analysis to revise its human rights policy.

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