We help our civil society clients and partners with their efforts to improve corporate transparency and accountability, including private sector compliance with human rights, the environment, anti-corruption best practices, and social responsibility standards, as well as strengthen their organizations.
For nearly a decade, Empower has produced hundreds of strategic research and other products for more than 30 clients in 20 countries. We have worked in most of the major countries in Latin America, the United States, several countries in Europe, Africa, and we have contributed work in other places.
Our clients and partners range from human rights organizations and trade unions, to university social science departments and philanthropic foundations.
We invariably employ a critical analysis of the state capture phenomenon, a follow-the-money methodology, power mapping and analysis, technology-based information tools, and a combination of open and human sources to produce actionable intelligence for corporate accountability advocates and human rights defenders.
Empower is well-equipped to offer services and dedicate attention to our civil society clients and partners, as well as expand to new clients, partners, and alliances that are in need of high-quality strategic research from a trustworthy organization.
Our staff is trained to collect and analyze multiple types of data and translate this into clear strategies and effective tactics to help your organization meet its objectives. We use open source and field research techniques, have access to academic and commercial databases, and adhere to rigorous standards for collecting, protecting, and disseminating research. In addition to strategic research, Empower is equipped to offer guidance and training for your organization’s campaigns and internal needs.
One of Empower’s main tasks is strategic corporate research. We strive to help civil society organizations, communities, workers, philanthropic foundations, universities, and other groups overcome the information gap between the private and social sectors by using tools and methods to collect, analyze, and disseminate information.
Strategic research identifies the power relationships between a company and its stakeholders, placing the company in the broader context of its economic, political, and social environment. For example, our researchers track decision-makers, drivers of corporate value, growth strategies, and other elements of business operations.
This research is combined with rigorous analysis and action recommendations tailored to help our clients empower and position themselves, strategically engage with the companies or decision-makers, and generally achieve their strategic objectives.
Examples of areas of strategic corporate research:
Industries and Supply Chains:
– Analysis of the key actors in an economic sector, supply chain, or geographic area. This type of analysis evaluates the power relationships between companies and examines the competitive landscape of a sector, identifying the most favorable sites for intervention and participation by the social sector.
– Profiles of companies listed on stock exchanges, privately held ones, and state-based enterprises to identify their facilities and operations, employees, history, products and services, and operational strategies.
– Financial analysis, including equity and debt analyses.
– Analysis of the legal and social responsibilities of a company, including safety and health, environmental compliance, political donations, and labor relations.
– Mapping of corporate structures, including subsidiaries, vendors, suppliers, and customers.
– Identification of the main corporate decision-makers, their key relationships, and vital institutional connections.
– Profiles of company administrators, members of boards of directors, and other key actors in business operations.
– Other services include asset tracking and social network analysis.
Examples of data we obtain:
– Interviews with key personnel and interest groups.
– Surveys of workers, clients, and communities.
– Primary source documents and testimonies that can only be obtained through field research methods.
– Secondary source documents and testimonies obtained through freedom of information requests, the media, and academic databases.
Our research results are adapted and disseminated according to the needs and specifications of clients and partners. Empower is equipped to collect hard-to-find data and documents that can be critical to advocacy goals. Our researchers have the ability to operate in North America, Europe, all of Latin America and the Caribbean, and in parts of Africa, the Middle East, and Asia as well. They are trained in qualitative and quantitative social science methods.
Due to the complex and sensitive nature of data collection and evaluation, Empower uses the latest tools and rigorous standards to ensure the security and integrity of our data, and that of our clients and partners.
Our researchers work with clients and partners to identify the political, legal, regulatory, and social environments that affect their organizations. Through consultations, we help identify the power relationships, opportunities, and risks in their campaigns and environments. We see ourselves as catalysts for strategic campaigning and decision making, and we train, accompany, and occasionally coordinate efforts of clients and partners to achieve their goals.
We do not seek to replace, supplant, exclude, undermine, or threaten the work of any civil society organization.
Empower’s multilingual team is prepared to conduct classroom or on-site training in all facets of strategic research, campaign planning, internal capacity building, and institutional strengthening in order to meet the needs of our clients and partners.
These are examples of clients and partners from different regions that, since 2013, have received research, guidance, training, or other services from Empower.
International human rights NGO: We uncover the relationships between big business and public procurement processes that produce human rights violations, and we contribute to affected peoples’ demands for truth and justice.
Rural communities in Mexico: We collaborate with them to reveal the companies behind mega-development projects and advise their land and territorial defense strategies.
European trade unions: We inform advocacy campaigns that help workers defend their labor rights in the energy sector.
U.S. universities: We conduct research on water use by large companies in Latin America.
Philanthropic foundations: We provide analysis about the technological surveillance of vulnerable populations and support campaigns to defend their rights.
Collectives of disappeared peoples’ families in Mexico: We employ analytical methodologies that contribute to their demands for truth and justice.
Empower offers competitive prices for short, medium, and long-term projects, including daily or weekly plans, monthly or yearly retainers, or project-specific jobs. Our prices are determined by a sliding scale depending on the urgency, timeframe, country or countries, requested services, sources to be consulted, staffing requirements, and the costs of obtaining the information through databases or specialized searches.
We are willing to work with each client and partner to satisfy their needs, and we take into account the economic capacity of each client when quoting our services. Empower is not a general organization that works with companies or governments.
Rather, we are dedicated to provide services only to civil society organizations that align with our Social Commitment guidelines. Are you interested in a quote for services? Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.