Corporate Social Responsibility

Brill's commitment to the
United Nations' Sustainable
Development Goals (SDGs)


Our mission states that we operate from a strong belief that the Humanities, Social Sciences, and International Law are areas of scholarship vital for addressing today's global challenges. These challenges can be found in the 17 Sustainable Development Goals as defined by the United Nations. They form the core of today's global questions. We are committed to contributing to their solutions through the research we publish, but also through the way we do business. This is why we are a proud member of the UN Global Compact and the SDG Publishers Compact.


Brill is a member of the United Nations (UN) Global Compact and ­the SDG Publishers Compact, and is committed to contributing to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the UN. Some of these SDGs form the core themes of the research that we publish and, as such, are an integral part of our publication program.

Over the last decade, Brill has published 15,819 works related to the SDGs, of which SDG 16 Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions occupies a large majority.

As we’re actively trying to expand our publication of SDG-focused research, we also undertake efforts to disseminate this research widely, through our regular channels as well as through our Humanities Matter blog and podcast series (on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts).

Good Health and Well-Being

Publications to date: 406

In a world ravaged by the COVID-19 pandemic over the whole of 2020, the aftermath of lockdown and isolation is still being felt in the form of mental health issues and loneliness. Therefore, research on topics like isolation, loneliness, and human connection, along with education and home schooling, and the history and social effects of pandemics is critical. This is an area where the humanities can contribute immensely. As an employer, we are committed to supporting our staff's health and well-being through flexible work hours and the possibility to work from home.


Publications to date: 719

Education is at the core of Brill's mission. We aim to advance discovery and learning in the humanities and social sciences, and we are keen to support scholars by providing them with access to the finest research tools and reference works in their fields. To support widespread dissemination of our published works, we invest in Open Access. We also have a Publication Ethics Committee that oversees policies ensuring integrity and quality education.


Publications to date: 236

Gender equality is one of the most fundamental bases of community, and Brill is committed to publications and practices centered around gender equality. In recent years, several publishers have published data on average pay across gender. We will report on this in our annual report from 2021 onwards and strive for equality in this regard.


Publications to date: 629

Brill is actively working towards ensuring diversity and inclusion across all stages of the publication process. Brill also adopts best practices for website accessibility and strives to adhere to guidelines and recommendations to improve accessibility. To advance accessibility and distribution, Brill offers discounts on its Open Access fees to academics and scientists in developing countries as part of the Brill Open Program.

Sustainable Cities and Communities

Publications to date: 24

We nurture and promote cultural heritage and the research community in our hometown Leiden. Leiden University deserves a special mention in this regard. The Brill Fellowship available at the Scaliger Institute makes it possible for researchers to study the special collections of Leiden University's library. Brill also contributes to Leiden's annual VeerStichting symposium and fosters and maintains relations with Dutch heritage institutes. We sponsor the Siebold Museum (Japan Studies) and Rijksmuseum Boerhaave (History of Science), both of which are in Leiden. Brill also sponsors the annual Plantin lecture in Leiden.

for the Goals

Publications to date: 24

Brill is committed to partnerships supporting research communities. Brill actively participates in existing education programs and takes initiatives in cooperation with professional publishers and international organizations, e.g., Research4Life, INASP, Association of Commonwealth Universities, and Publishers for Development. Actively contributing to these initiatives supports the future development of the global scholarly community.

Consumption and Production

Publications to date:

Brill is fully dedicated to fair practices pertaining to social conditions (such as exclusion of child labor and corruption) and materials. We comply with applicable laws and regulations of the countries in which we operate. In our publication program, we pay special attention to working conditions and modern forms of slavery in production and manufacturing.


Publications to date: 507

Climate change is a global crisis that needs to be addressed urgently. Along with publishing books, articles, and series that contain topics dealing with responsible climate action, Brill takes measures to reduce its environmental impact, examples of measures include compensating our CO2 usage for marketing materials and travel, reducing travel by plane and promoting travelling by train , as well as banning plastic bags and plastic wrapping for books. We are continuously looking at new measures we can take to reduce our environmental footprint.

Peace, Justice
and Strong

Publications to date: 11,160

Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions form the foundation of a just world that can achieve all SDGs. As mentioned above, our research on the SDGs is especially geared towards SDG 16, which can be seen in our International Law and Human Rights program. In light of this, we are also proud of our cooperation with The Hague Academy Of International Law for which we publish The Hague Academy Collected Courses.

Sustainability resources