Corporate Social Responsibility in the 21st Century

Corporate Social Responsibility in the 21st Century

Debates, Models and Practices Across Government, Law and Business

Bryan Horrigan

Professor Bryan Horrigan spans subjects as diverse and topical as global corporate responsibility and governance debates, practical guidelines for responsible businesses and their professional advisers, governmental roles in corporate social responsibility, corporations and human rights, and the new era of ‘enlightened shareholder value’. He also highlights an emerging transnational and comparative body of law, regulation, and practice on corporate social responsibility. Illustrated throughout with meaningful controversies and examples, the book also highlights the major recent global developments in corporate social responsibility already this century, focusing especially on Europe, the UK, North America, and Australasia, and charting its future regulatory and research directions worldwide.

Chapter 4: Mapping Governmental Frameworks and Roles on Corporate Social Responsibility

Bryan Horrigan

Subjects: business and management, management and sustainability, environment, environmental management, law - academic, corporate law and governance, human rights, politics and public policy, human rights


OVERVIEW CSR no longer simply affects relationships between businesses and society. It has become a way of rethinking the role of companies in society, which takes governance and sustainability as its core values and changes the focus of CSR public policies. – CSR public policy scholars Laura Albareda, Josep Lozano and Tamyko Ysa1 The Government understands that it has a strategic role to play in encouraging the right conditions for sustainable business practice . . . I believe the role of Government is in creating an environment that – first encourages, facilitates and promotes the integration of CSR into companies’ business practices and secondly opens those practices up to accountability and transparency. – Australia’s Minister for Superannuation and Corporate Law, Senator Nick Sherry2 The study of CSR in the first part of this book provides a platform for mapping how its contemporary features and debates manifest themselves in particular corporate regulatory systems. Such a mapping exercise starts with governmental policy, legal and other regulatory measures directed towards CSR. Governmental CSR concerns in the 21st century are national, regional and global in focus. ‘The discourse on CSR has moved away from an emphasis on the social, economic and political development of the native country to more universal concerns about environmental integrity and global welfare’, notes Wharton’s Professor Donaldson.3 Despite the varying historical, social and political dynamics shaping different governmental approaches to CSR in different countries and regions, governments that want to foster CSR can usefully model policy and regulatory approaches elsewhere. ‘The European strategy on CSR and...

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