Learning activity 3.4
Exploring the causes of sexual harassment in global supply chains


Jigsaw is a cooperative learning strategy that encourages people to develop their own understanding and then share knowledge with the group as a whole.  The aim is to enable participants to learn from each other and understand the complexity of the causes of sexual harassment in global supply chains.  

Suggested time

  • 90 minutes

Target groups

Representatives from:

  • Lead companies aiming to improve supply chain organization;
  • Global, national and local employer organization and trade unions;
  • National and local government responsible for legislative implementation and factory inspection;
  • Multi Stakeholder Initiatives and social auditors;
  • Global, national and local NGOs and women’s organization;
  • Factory and farm workers.


  • Discuss the specific reasons that make sexual harassment a pervasive issue in global supply chains.
  • Appreciate the effect of production pressures and supply chain dynamics.
  • Appreciate the need to tackle issues in an integrated way.


  • Prepare copies of Briefing 3.2, paragraph 3, Characteristics of global supply chains and causes of gender-based violence in global supply chains, including Chart 3 (The specific causes behind sexual harassment in global supply chains).
  • Prepare a series of cards/sheets each one presenting one of the eight factors. Each issue will represent a ‘piece’ of a larger picture of issues in global supply chains.
  • Collect sources of information for the working session, including visual presentations.


  • A room large enough to accommodate several groups. 


  • Cards, presenting the different factors (one “factor” per card)
  • Copies of Briefing 2.2.3
  • Flip-charts or post-it and space for posting
  • Markers
  • Tape (if needed)


Step 1 (suggested time: 30 minutes):

  • Split into small groups of up to 4 participants.
  • Hand each group one or more cards covering each of the eight factors listed in Chart 3. Each group will have different cards.
  • Hand each group one copy of Briefing 2.2.3.  Ask them to read only the short information related to the factors they have to discuss in their group.
  • Each group will have someone nominated to take notes and someone to keep time.
  • Ask participants to discuss and share experiences.  Is it a factor that contributes to workers’ risks of sexual harassment and violence in global supply chains? How these risks can be tackled?

Step 2 (suggested time 15-20 minutes):

  • Each group will provide a short report of the issues discussed (max 5’ each). This is followed by 10-15 minutes discussion where the different pieces of the jigsaw are discussed together.
  • Ensure that the discussion draws out the additional factors (such as production pressures, supervisors’ incentives, low unionisation etc.) that are faced by factories and farms in global supply chains, and why these lead to greater risks of gender-based violence.

How to adapt the activity

  • If there is a small group the activity can be carried out in plenary. Each person is handed a card and they are discussed in the full group.
  • One option is to ask each participant to reflect individually and come up with three solutions and to note these on separate ‘post-it’ notes. These are then grouped by theme by the facilitator.



Overview of jigsaw methodology: