What do we mean by corporate social responsibility?

What do we mean by corporate social responsibility? There have long been conflicting expectations of the nature of companies’ responsibilities to society. However, for those businesses that do undertake what might be termed “corporate social responsibility”, what is actually socially responsible behaviour as opposed to management of corporate image management or other activity aimed predominantly at business benefits? This article reviews definitions of corporate social responsibility from both practice and the literature and looks at theories to explain why such behaviour takes place. The literature has strong divides between normative or ethical actions and instrumental activities. The article concludes by posing the question of when instrumental activities become business activities rather than largely social responsibility. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Corporate Governance Emerald Publishing

What do we mean by corporate social responsibility?

Corporate Governance, Volume 1 (2): 7 – Jun 1, 2001

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2001 MCB UP Ltd. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1472-0701
DOI
10.1108/EUM0000000005486
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

There have long been conflicting expectations of the nature of companies’ responsibilities to society. However, for those businesses that do undertake what might be termed “corporate social responsibility”, what is actually socially responsible behaviour as opposed to management of corporate image management or other activity aimed predominantly at business benefits? This article reviews definitions of corporate social responsibility from both practice and the literature and looks at theories to explain why such behaviour takes place. The literature has strong divides between normative or ethical actions and instrumental activities. The article concludes by posing the question of when instrumental activities become business activities rather than largely social responsibility.

Journal

Corporate GovernanceEmerald Publishing

Published: Jun 1, 2001

Keywords: Corporate strategy; Social responsibility; Stakeholders; Social accounting

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