Purpose – This paper seeks to provide the reader with a clear insight into the discussion over the voluntary aspect of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and the attempts to introduce regulatory reforms to control corporate activities within Australia. Design/methodology/approach – This paper evaluates the arguments regarding the need for CSR and the criticisms against its voluntary initiative, and analyses three proposed aspects for regulatory amendment in Australia: fiduciary duty, extraterritorial regulation and corporate disclosure. Findings – This paper recognises the attributes of both the mandatory and voluntary aspects, and suggests that there needs to be a balance between both mechanisms in order to achieve a positive outcome. Originality/value – Although, in Australia, amendment proposals have not been approved, the discussions over regulatory reform will continue. This paper will provide those involved in this field with an insight to the underlying issues over directors' duties, extraterritorial regulation and corporate disclosure. The understanding of these issues will be useful in the future development of appropriate mechanisms regarding CSR.
International Journal of Law and Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: May 9, 2013
Keywords: Corporate social responsibility; Directors' duties; Extraterritorial regulation; Corporate disclosure; Social responsibility; Disclosure; Corporate strategy; Australia
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