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Leadership and Corporate Social Responsibility

Abstract

Leadership and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) are some of the most widely studied topics, generating an extensive literature. Nowadays, leaders are facing economic, social and environmental challenges. Unfortunately, today trust in business is low. In this complex global environment of uncertainty and ambiguity, leaders have to anticipate the changes and to be catalysts for shifting their organizations towards a sustainable society. The purpose of the present paper is to investigate leaders’ opinion regarding: Corporate responsibilities (Carroll’s’ four-layered pyramid model); Reasons for CSR actions/ projects; Areas of interest for CSR projects/ activities/ initiatives. Taking into account the growing interest towards a sustainable society is a need for a new type of leadership that promotes the CSR’s ideals.

Open access
Evaluation and reporting of CSR in SME sector

Summary

This article is an attempt to propose a CSR evaluation and CSR reporting model in small and medium-sized enterprises. Special attention was given to trends which reveal the need for CSR development in practice with particular emphasis on efficiency - understood in two aspects: first one related to social welfare and sustainable development and the second one as a competitive advantage.

The new approach is based on a flexible tool for the evaluation and reporting of CSR, which also acts as a reference model for improvement of responsible entrepreneurship. An evaluation model, ESG risks catalog for manufacturing companies and a tool for monitoring and reporting of ESG risks were developed. Further work will include refinement of the method of evaluation model, including reporting tools and ESG risks catalogs for other sectors.

Open access
Conceptual framework of value creation through CSR in separate member of value creation chain

Abstract

The main goal of this paper is to prepare a conceptual framework which would help to determine where any kind of value might emerge while various actions of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) are implemented. Such conceptual framework is suggested as a backbone for further research and empiric justification in order to develop a simplified yet effective CSR outcome evaluation model which might be used in practice in any company. Such practical model should help to determine which CSR action might bring maximized value outcome with lowest costs. The main attention in this paper is concentrated only on a single company as a member of value creation chain (VCC). The paper lays foundation for perspective to develop the research in a holistic way - to evaluate the effect of CSR integration in whole VCC. Many authors have debated the different possibilities of simultaneously incorporating social, environmental and economic concerns into management thinking and practice (Aguilera et al., 2007) in organizational behavior; Buysse and Verbeke (2003); Starkey and Crane (2003); Barin-Cruz et al. (2006) in strategic management. All those scholars have been developing concept of CSR from different point of view. This paper concerns value creation through CSR as economical category. But therefore in order to indicate areas of possible value creation, various all above mentioned aspects of CSR concept are taken into account.

This paper suggests a framework of value creation through CSR, considering CSR implementation might help to create shared value for few beneficiaries simultaneously. The framework consists of all four types of responsibilities described by Carroll (1999), different levels of CSR activity, three major groups of beneficiaries (company, society, stakeholders) and areas of possible value creation.

Open access
What do we know about corporate social responsibility research? a content analysis

Abstract

Using content analysis, the objectives of the current study are: (1) to provide a systematic review of the corporate social responsibility (CSR) literature, (2) to examine underlying trends in CSR research, (3) to identify milestones in the development of CSR research, and (4) to clarify and categorise the structure of CSR studies. An examination of 774 selected CSR articles shows a significant upward trend in the volume of CSR publications, particularly in the 2000s. Among these articles, 122 papers from leading academic journals are further analysed to classify and label the development stages of CSR research as: incubation, exploration, adolescent development and relative maturity stages. Our findings also reveal five major CSR research themes: concepts and reviews, corporate context, CSR-related strategy, corporate reputation and the linkage between corporate social performance (CSP) and corporate financial performance (CFP). The paper concludes with suggestions for future CSR research.

Open access
Environmental issues of the corporate social responsibility

Summary

The article is dealing with the environmental corporate responsibility. Taking this research topic stems from a growing awareness of entrepreneurs in this area and is associated with the popularity of proving the social responsibility before a group of stakeholders. The article discussed past literature achievements relating to environmental management as one of the areas of corporate social responsibility. There were also presented current imperatives of this aspect, which became the subject of practical research to find effective ways of their compliance. Practical examples of solutions to grouped environmental requirements were described in the second part of the article.

Open access
CSR EMAT Is an Opportunity for Responsible Decision-Making

Abstract

Corporate social responsibility is an expected behaviour in Western countries, but the approach still does not have a clear interpretation in Hungary. As a result of the increasing prestige of the CSR approach, socially responsible thinking and action also are expected from the companies operating in Hungary. Company executives carry out CSR activities in many cases – but not consciously. The objective of this research therefore was the development of a guidance and evaluation criteria that can support managers in responsible decision-making and applying the CSR approach to a strategic level. On the other hand, this management tool allows the measurement of CSR excellence in companies; therefore, they become comparable in their CSR performance, which offers opportunities for further research. The study presents the development of CSR EMAT and the results achieved through the measurements.

Open access
The business case for corporate social responsibility: A literature overview and integrative framework

Abstract

Purpose: The goal of this paper is to develop a framework describing the mechanisms which explain how and when CSR engagement affects company’s bottom line, based on a review of the business case for CSR literature.

Approach: This article is conceptual and based on literature review. By using a CSR stage development model, behavioral and stakeholder perspectives, it offers a descriptive multi-dimensional integrative framework of the business case for CSR.

Findings: The findings show that the relationship between engagement in CSR activities and corporate performance (CP) depends on a CSR development stage, managerial interpretation of CSR issues, stakeholder management model and moderating factors.

Originality: This article integrates disconnected models and conceptualizations in the subject literature and contributes to the theoretical discussion by arguing that type and scale of benefits from CSR activity progress along the stages of organizational CSR development. Moreover, it also shows that the CSR-CP relationship depends on internal and external factors (mediators and moderators). It therefore supports the contingency argument.

Open access
The Environmental Responsibility of the World’s Largest Banks

Abstract

Sustainability transition is changing the role and function of banks, specially their products and services also in relation to stakeholders. Banks are one of the main actors supporting the transition to sustainable economy. The purpose of this study is to emphasise the role of world’s largest banks in that process. Banks are slowly responding to the new demand of sustainability and responsibility, and they try to align with it. The paper is based on an overview of the world’s five largest banks that employ corporate social responsibility (CSR) reporting standards, together with detailed enumeration of pro-environmental activities included in the reports. The first section of this paper presents the most popular approaches to the problem at hand, as reported in professional literature. Section two presents the characteristics of the CSR actions in banks. The third section discusses the environmental actions of the biggest banks in Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) reporting the most popular standard for reporting non-financial information. And the last part of the paper presents the conclusions resulting from the article. The research was conducted using a variety of sources, such as scientific articles, statistical data, CSR reports of the world’s largest banks, as well reporting principles and standard disclosures. The basic method used in the process of writing was a critical analysis of literature and reports concerning the CSR reporting standards, environmental responsibilities of different kinds of entities, as well as own observations based on special reports of banks. In the article, also the analysis of financial market data, induction method and comparison method have been used. The main conclusions of the analysis of the CSR reports disclosed by the world’s largest banks confirm all three of the theses presented in the article. The findings suggest that the banks under study can be regarded as environmentally responsible entities. Their reports and disclosures are produced according to the internationally recognized standards. There are also critical opinions about the standards for reporting environmental information, but the weaknesses of reporting these aspects do not undermine the benefits of using the GRI guidelines.

Open access
The Connection between Corporate Social Responsibility and Corporate Respect for Human Rights

Abstract

The purpose of this article is to study the connection between corporate respect for human rights and corporate social responsibility. The author argues that business entities have a responsibility to respect human rights and that this responsibility forms part of their corporate social responsibility. The author defends the view that business and human rights issues are distinct from corporate social responsibility issues in their legal nature and content, while the strategic approach in the implementation of these concepts is the same. The author further examines whether voluntary corporate social responsibility initiatives include human rights, and how society understands the connection between the two. The conclusions of the article shed light on the interconnection between these two terms.

Open access
Good Tax Governance: A Matter of Moral Responsibility and Transparency

Abstract

Multinational corporations’ tax practices are hotly debated nowadays. Multinationals are accused of not paying their fair share of taxes. Apparently, acting within the limits set by law is not sufficient to qualify as morally responsible behavior anymore.

This article offers ethical reflection on the current debate. The general public typically evaluates (aggressive) tax planning in moral terms rather than legal terms. Therefore, multinationals need to reflect on their tax planning strategy next to economic and legal terms also in ethical terms. This article addresses the relationship between society, morality and taxes. The concepts of tax planning, “aggressive tax planning”, “tax evasion” and “tax avoidance” are elaborated on to exemplify the difference between a purely legal and broader approach. In moral terms, aggressive tax planning may imply loss of integrity and trust which may entail certain costs for businesses, such as reputation damage. It will be argued that in order to improve corporate reputation and (moral) leadership, corporate social responsibility (CSR), endorsed by many corporations around the globe, is a helpful tool. Reflection on tax planning in the context of CSR - good tax governance - should foster a moral mind set and enhance accountability and transparency.

Open access