The research project “Cost allocation and incentive mechanisms for environmental, climate protection and resource conservation along global supply chains” commissioned by the German Environment Agency, analyses (dis)incentives for and barriers to the implementation of environmental measures as well as the exchange of information between different actors along selected global supply chains. The project focuses on five supply chains from raw material to the end product that represent key sectors of the German industry with a high potential for environmental and human rights risks: cotton/readymade garments; tin/tin solder; natural rubber/car tyres; coffee/coffee for consumption; iron ore/quality steel for automotive industry. This report summarises the results of the first of five work packages, which aims to gain a comprehensive understanding of the current functioning of the selected supply chains, existing power structures, barriers and incentives, and the institutional framework for environmental protection, information sharing and cost-benefit distribution. The report is based on a comprehensive qualitative analysis of relevant studies, reports, databases and online tools. To supplement the existing data and sources, the team conducted interviews with experts from various segments of the supply chains as well as civil society organisations active in the respective supply chains.