To read this content please select one of the options below:

The impact of corporate social responsibility (CSR) knowledge on corporate financial performance: evidence from the European banking industry

Francesco Gangi (Department of Economics, Università degli Studi della Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, Caserta, Italy)
Mario Mustilli (Department of Economics, Università degli Studi della Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, Caserta, Italy)
Nicola Varrone (Department of Economics, Università degli Studi della Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, Caserta, Italy)

Journal of Knowledge Management

ISSN: 1367-3270

Article publication date: 22 November 2018

Issue publication date: 23 January 2019

6071

Abstract

Purpose

Assuming that corporate social responsibility (CSR) is “a process of accumulating knowledge and experience” (Tang et al., 2012, p. 1298), this paper aims to investigate whether and how CSR knowledge (Asif et al., 2013; Kim, 2017) affects financial performance in the European banking industry.

Design/methodology/approach

The empirical research analyses a panel of 72 banks from 20 European countries over seven years (2009-2015). The hypotheses were tested using fixed effects regression analysis and the two-stage Heckman model (1976) to address endogeneity bias.

Findings

The findings of this work are twofold. First, consistent with the concept of knowledge absorptive capacity (Cohen and Levinthal, 1990), the internal CSR of banks (Kim et al., 2010) positively affects citizenship performance (Peterson, 2004a). Second, in line with the reputational effect of CSR (Margolis et al., 2009; Bushman and Wittenberg-Moerman, 2012), citizenship performance is a positive predictor of a bank’s financial performance.

Practical implications

From a knowledge-based perspective, the analysis shows that accrued internal CSR knowledge plays a key role in implementing effective CSR programs for external stakeholders. Moreover, this study shows how CSR engagement in external initiatives can improve a bank’s competitiveness because of the relationship between citizenship performance and the positive reputation of a bank.

Social implications

The management of CSR initiatives may favor the sharing of knowledge and creation of trust relationships among banks and internal and external stakeholders. CSR knowledge contributes to expanded value creation for both society and banks.

Originality/value

The knowledge management perspective of CSR provides new insights into the sustainability of banks’ business models and contributes to advancing the debate on the governance modes and effects of CSR. Moreover, the CSR perspective offers additional opportunities for addressing the challenges associated with sharing tacit knowledge within and outside of organizations.

Keywords

Citation

Gangi, F., Mustilli, M. and Varrone, N. (2019), "The impact of corporate social responsibility (CSR) knowledge on corporate financial performance: evidence from the European banking industry", Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol. 23 No. 1, pp. 110-134. https://doi.org/10.1108/JKM-04-2018-0267

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles