Edited by Sabri Boubaker, Douglas Cumming and Duc K. Nguyen
Chapter 6: Corporate social responsibility and firm innovation
This chapter examines whether corporate social responsibility (CSR) is associated with a company’s innovative activities. Specifically, we focus on both patent applications and patent citations to capture the quantity and quality of innovative outputs, respectively. We find that the level of CSR is positively related to the number of patent applications and the sum of patent citations even after controlling for R & D intensity as an input of innovative efforts. Additional analysis indicates that among various CSR activities, CSR engagement in both environment and employment areas is the main driver of the positive association between CSR and patent outcomes. Overall findings are consistent with the notion that managers engage in strategic CSR to help generate a sustainable competitive advantage.
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