Patrizia Hoyer, Chris Steyaert and Julia C. Nentwich
The concept of discrete stages or levels can be applied to corporate social responsibility. In a four-stage model, organizations at the bottom level maximize profits for shareholders without any other obligations. The only responsibility corporations have is that of maximizing profits to shareholders while engaging in open and free competition, without deception or fraud. Organizations at the top level activate corporate actions to contribute as active citizens in society. Corporate executives look for opportunities in society where the company can make a difference.
Andromachi Athanasopoulou and John W. Selsky
This chapter emphasizes the importance of taking into account a broad view of the social context when designing and implementing CSR studies and when using the findings from such studies to inform practice. We argue for multi-level, multi-perspective approaches to CSR studies and propose that the research approach of contextualism may be a useful framework for context-sensitive CSR research going forward. We argue that contextualism may help researchers to understand the broader dynamics that affect CSR practice, enabling them to design more critical and more political CSR research studies. We conclude by suggesting how the outcomes of critical-contextualist research may help managers become more effective in their CSR practice, and discuss the obligations of CSR scholars in this regard.
Edited by Anders Örtenblad
Is corporate social responsibility (CSR) a universal idea? Is the same exact definition of CSR relevant for any organization, regardless of context? Or would such a definition need to be adapted to fit different types of organizations, in different cultures, industries and sectors? This book discusses how CSR preferably should be practiced in various generalized contexts. Experts share their knowledge on whether a broad definition of CSR can be practiced as is or if it first has to undergo changes, in as various generalized contexts as Buddhist and Islamic organizations, developing countries, the food processing industry, the shipping industry, and the pharmaceutical industry.
The insurance company takes on business responsibility to society by controlling the ownership of a clubhouse where a number of organized criminals are living as members of the motorcycle gang. The insurance company applies a business perspective, where it keeps the pledge in the clubhouse as long as individuals have debts with the firm. However, the insurance company is not willing to involve itself in law enforcement.
Reflections on the universality and philosophical foundations of the ‘corporate social responsibility’ definition
Jared M. Hansen
This research examines the universality of the corporate social responsibility (CSR) definition labeled the ‘seven aspects model’. Definitions are an important part of research, and all research has philosophical foundations. This research outlines potential choices in philosophical underpinnings for CSR research and constructing the definition of CSR. It finds that scientific realism is capable of serving as a philosophical foundation for research adopting the seven aspects model. In contrast, relativism is shown not to be capable of serving as a philosophical foundation for the same scientific research. The research then reviews and comments upon the seven aspects definition of CSR through the following definitional characteristics: inclusivity, exclusivity, differentiability, clarity, communicability, consistency and parsimony. Last, the research discusses how context-based CSR research – for example, culture, religion, nations, industries and sectors, interactions between them, and specific situations – can be used to further evaluate and improve the definition.