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Corporate social responsibility as shared value creation: toward a communicative approach

Christiane Marie Høvring (Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark)

Corporate Communications: An International Journal

ISSN: 1356-3289

Article publication date: 3 April 2017



The debate on corporate social responsibility (CSR) as shared value creation is trapped between management scholars and business ethics scholars, focusing merely on the distribution of values from an outcome-oriented perspective. The result is a juxtaposition of shared value from either a corporate or a societal perspective, providing only little attention to the actual communication processes supporting the creation of shared value. The purpose of this paper is to re-conceptualize shared value creation from a communicative approach as an alternative to the current situation caught between the management and societal perspectives.


Building upon recent constitutive models of CSR communication, this conceptual paper explores the potentials and implications of re-conceptualizing shared value creation as an alternative approach that recognizes the tensional interaction processes related to shared value creation.


The paper suggests a new conceptualization of shared value creation, which is sensitive to and able to advance the understanding of the tensional and conflictual interaction processes in which the continuous negotiation of corporate and stakeholder interests, values and agendas may facilitate a new understanding of shared value creation.

Practical implications

In order to succeed with the shared purpose of creating shared value (CSV), the company and the multiple stakeholders should neither disregard nor idealize the interaction processes related to shared value creation; rather, they should acknowledge that processes filled with tensions and conflicts are prerequisites for CSV.


A re-conceptualization of shared value creation that provides an alternative approach that is sensitive toward the tensions and conflicts occurring between corporate voice and multiple stakeholder voices.



Høvring, C.M. (2017), "Corporate social responsibility as shared value creation: toward a communicative approach", Corporate Communications: An International Journal, Vol. 22 No. 2, pp. 239-256.



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