The purpose of this paper is to propose and empirically test intellectual capital (IC) as a mediator in the corporate social responsibility (CSR) and financial performance (FP) relationship.
The empirical research was conducted on 345 European firms listed in the STOXX Europe 600 index. To evaluate the mediating effect of IC, we applied the four-step Baron and Kenny model, tested through an ordinary least squares regression analysis.
The findings highlighted a partial mediation of IC on the CSR–FP relationship, suggesting that the implementation of CSR strategies has a positive effect on the development of firms' IC, which in turn enhances firms' competitive advantage and superior long-term FPs.
We found a new mediator in the CSR–FP relationship and we contribute to a new line of research that aims to study environmental and sustainability aspects strictly interrelated with IC and performances (sustainable intellectual capital).
Nirino, N., Ferraris, A., Miglietta, N. and Invernizzi, A.C. (2020), "Intellectual capital: the missing link in the corporate social responsibility–financial performance relationship", Journal of Intellectual Capital, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JIC-02-2020-0038
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