For business or the good of all? A Finnish approach to corporate social responsibility

Elisa Juholin (Professor of Organizational Communication and PR at the University of Jyväskylä, Department of Communication, and docent of communication at the University of Helsinki, Finland. Her research focuses on corporate communication, political communication, and corporate social responsibility. She has wide experience as a consultant with both private and public organizations. Tel: 358‐400‐697585 E‐mail: elisa.juholin@jyu.fi)

Corporate Governance

ISSN: 1472-0701

Publication date: 1 September 2004

Abstract

The study suggests that the prominent driving force behind corporate social responsibility (CSR) is companies’ long‐term profitability, supported by company leadership and efficiency, competitiveness, and the ability to anticipate the future. The long evolution of Finnish companies since the 18th century has created fertile ground for responsibility. Despite the absence of significant moral or ethical guidance, the thinking of the participating companies was for the most part business‐oriented. The management and organization of CSR appeared to be professional and efficient. CSR was found to be optimal at the highest level of the organizations studied, and the commitment of the top management unquestionable. The present status of CSR seemed to exist more on the theoretical than the practical level. Implementation was seen as a major challenge for the future. The jungle of standards and measurement instruments is a serious problem. Communication was narrowly viewed and technical, and the prevailing paradigm was rather mechanistic.

Keywords

Citation

Juholin, E. (2004), "For business or the good of all? A Finnish approach to corporate social responsibility", Corporate Governance, Vol. 4 No. 3, pp. 20-31. https://doi.org/10.1108/14720700410547477

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Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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