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Corporate social responsibility behaviors and corporate reputation

Scott Jeffrey (Leon Hess Business School, Monmouth University, West Long Branch, New Jersey, USA)
Stuart Rosenberg (Leon Hess Business School, Monmouth University, West Long Branch, New Jersey, USA)
Brianna McCabe (Leon Hess Business School, Monmouth University, West Long Branch, New Jersey, USA)

Social Responsibility Journal

ISSN: 1747-1117

Article publication date: 30 October 2018

Issue publication date: 3 May 2019




This paper aims to study how corporate social responsibility (CSR) behaviors can lead to corporate membership on Fortune Magazine’s Most Admired Companies list.


Regression analysis using environmental, social and governance (ESG) statistics published by MSCI-KLD as independent variables to predict the behaviors that lead to most admired status.


Not surprisingly, corporate financial performance (CFP) is the largest contributor to membership on the list. However, after controlling for CFP, the analysis finds that specific social responsibility behaviors contribute to membership on the Fortune list.

Practical implications

This paper finds that CSR behaviors are important to a firm’s reputation as measured by Fortune’s Most Admired Companies list. Therefore, companies should continue with social responsibility activities to improve their reputation with investors.


Many articles test the effect of ESG on financial performance and the role of financial performance on stock price. This paper is unique in that it measures the impact of CSR on corporate reputation using an important financial market benchmark – the Fortune Most Admired Companies list.



The authors wish to thank the Leon Hess Business School of Monmouth University for purchasing the data required for this project and for the provision of graduate research assistants. In addition, they wish to thank Shannon Lindquist for her assistance in compiling the Bloomberg data and Robert Scott for his assistance with the interpretation of the statistical analysis. Compliance with ethical standards: Ethical approval: This paper does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


Jeffrey, S., Rosenberg, S. and McCabe, B. (2019), "Corporate social responsibility behaviors and corporate reputation", Social Responsibility Journal, Vol. 15 No. 3, pp. 395-408.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited

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