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Article
Publication date: 2 December 2019

Merridee Lynne Bujaki and Sylvain Durocher

This qualitative paper is about social reporting in response to an incident that involved the loss of human life. It examines Loblaw’s disclosures following the Rana Plaza…

Abstract

Purpose

This qualitative paper is about social reporting in response to an incident that involved the loss of human life. It examines Loblaw’s disclosures following the Rana Plaza building collapse that killed over 1,100 Bangladeshi workers.

Design/methodology/approach

This article draws on Suchman’s (1995) comprehensive legitimacy typology to interpret Loblaw’s disclosures about the collapse in both mass media coverage of the tragedy and the company’s quarterly, annual and corporate social responsibility (CSR) reports.

Findings

Loblaw worked on many fronts to secure stakeholders’ support in the aftermath of the fatal incident. Through their social disclosures, Loblaw simultaneously managed exchange, dispositional, consequential, procedural, structural, personal and cognitive legitimacy, striving to demonstrate that, notwithstanding the incident, the company was still conforming to its social contract.

Practical implications

This research operationalizes all aspects of Suchman’s legitimacy typology in the context of social reporting. In particular, the paper further develops the concept of cognitive legitimacy. This should be of benefit to other CSR researchers.

Social implications

The loss of human life during business operations is one of the most terrible events an organization can face. Corporate activities leading to loss of human life are obviously far from being socially acceptable. Stakeholders are likely to disapprove such activities and reconsider their support, which can threaten the survival of the organization. It is thus of utmost importance to understand the strategies used by corporate managers in their attempt to secure ongoing stakeholder support.

Originality/value

This paper innovates by focusing specifically on social disclosures about a negative event. In so doing, it also contributes to a small, but important, literature within CSR research that examines incidents resulting in the loss of human life. The paper adapts and applies Suchman’s legitimacy framework to interpret social reporting in response to a specific instance of loss of life, the Rana Plaza building collapse. Finally, this paper mobilizes the notion of cognitive dissonance to further develop Suchman’s notion of cognitive legitimacy.

Details

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, vol. 11 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8021

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2017

Enrico Fontana

This e-book sheds light on the concept of strategic corporate social responsibility (CSR) in supply chains within a developing country context. This paper aims to…

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1198

Abstract

Purpose

This e-book sheds light on the concept of strategic corporate social responsibility (CSR) in supply chains within a developing country context. This paper aims to investigate cognitive antecedents as well as behavioral consequences of corporate executives toward investing in strategic CSR. Moreover, it displays if and how strategic CSR contributes to creating performance benefits for the supplier.

Design/methodology/approach

This study is qualitative and exploratory in its nature. After drafting a five-dimensional framework from extant literature, it empirically elaborates on a case-study analysis based on primary data gathered through semi-structured interviews on ten executives (i.e. top executives, directors, owners) in large-size supplier companies within the Bangladeshi ready-made garment (RMG) supply chain.

Findings

First, it highlights altruism and performance as being cognitively and theoretically espoused in strategic CSR; yet, one appears to oust the other. Second, it demonstrates that if CSR-driven investments allow for a competitive positional betterment, as for suppliers in the Bangladeshi RMG industry, profit-driven CSR diffuses at the expense of altruism. Third, it confirms CSR’s strategic role as necessary but not sufficient for competitive advantage, delivering insights on suppliers’ future posture vis-à-vis CSR in the Bangladeshi RMG supply chains.

Research limitations/implications

The e-book investigates strategic CSR’s struggle to maintain a balance between moral and profit-maximization motives at the cognitive level but being paradoxically required in supply chains. A limitation, inter alia, entails the focus on the horizontal perspective of the sample and the RMG supply chain.

Originality/value

The e-book provides valuable theoretical and practical insights by capitalizing on unique data retrieved from the Bangladeshi supply chain.

Details

European Business Review, vol. 29 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0955-534X

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Article
Publication date: 11 January 2019

Dima Jamali, Yasmeen Makarem and Alberto Willi

Anchored in institutional theory and sense-making theory, the purpose of this paper is to explore the implementation of corporate social responsibility (CSR) at the…

Abstract

Purpose

Anchored in institutional theory and sense-making theory, the purpose of this paper is to explore the implementation of corporate social responsibility (CSR) at the multinational corporations (MNC) subsidiary level in a developing country context.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper follows a qualitative methodology and adopts the interview technique to investigate the CSR practices of eight MNCs.

Findings

The results suggest that the CSR diffusion process goes well beyond simple imitation (i.e. adopting CSR myths or best practices intact), involving complex processes of interpretation and translation at the subsidiary level to reconcile the multiple and contradictory expectations for CSR.

Originality/value

The paper illustrates the dynamics of the sense-making process at the level of the subsidiary and the numerous institutional factors that are accounted for while implementing CSR activities in the host community. This paper argues that the integration of the two theories helps bridge macro and micro levels of analysis, thus providing a much richer account of how organizational actors at the subsidiary level make “sense” of a multitude of institutional pressures in the process of CSR implementation stemming from within the MNC itself on one hand (and the respective home country) and from the host community on the other hand.

Details

Social Responsibility Journal, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-1117

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Article
Publication date: 10 August 2015

Jiyoung Hwang and Jay Kandampully

This purpose of this article is to identify important factors that influence consumers’ responses to pro-social loyalty programs (pro-social LPs). These positive marketing…

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2571

Abstract

Purpose

This purpose of this article is to identify important factors that influence consumers’ responses to pro-social loyalty programs (pro-social LPs). These positive marketing programs reflect represent an emerging phenomenon in relationship marketing associated with companies’ corporate social responsibility (CSR).

Design/methodology/approach

The test of the proposed model relied on data from 350 US consumers, obtained through web-based experiments. Data analysis was performed using structural equation modeling.

Findings

The results showed that consumers’ CSR-driven cognition (CSR beliefs) and reciprocal emotion (feeling of gratitude) enhance their attitudes toward pro-social LPs and increased participation intentions. The perceived value of pro-social LPs also improved consumer attitudes and participation intentions.

Practical implications

Pro-social LPs offer a noteworthy approach to relationship marketing that benefits both service providers that engage in CSR and society overall.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the literature on LP and CSR by investigating the roles of CSR-driven cognition, reciprocal emotion and value perception in explaining consumers’ responses to an innovative approach of LPs and pro-social LPs.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 29 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

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Article
Publication date: 14 September 2015

Zaheer Khan, Yong Kyu Lew and Byung Il Park

The purpose of this corporate social responsibility (CSR) paper is to investigate specific social roles of multinational corporations (MNCs) in a developing economy, and…

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3709

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this corporate social responsibility (CSR) paper is to investigate specific social roles of multinational corporations (MNCs) in a developing economy, and how these MNCs’ CSR marketing activities are legitimized, from the institutional perspective.

Design/methodology/approach

Anchoring this study in institutional theory, the authors explore how formal and informal institutions affect the legitimacy of MNCs’ CSR marketing practices in the host country of Pakistan. The authors conducted interviews with top managers from 15 local MNCs undertaking CSR programs in various sectors, such as automotive, banking, consumer products, oil and gas, pharmaceuticals, and telecommunications.

Findings

The authors find that MNCs show commitment to CSR programs despite underdeveloped and very weak formal institutions, and that lots of these initiatives such as education, health, environmental protection, and civil society/religious organizations are oriented toward norms-based social CSR marketing, i.e. charitable and philanthropic work, civil society-led social media and religious groups also force MNCs to spend more on CSR marketing initiatives. MNCs follow headquarters’ global CSR marketing strategies and adapt their CSR programs to the host country’s norms, focussing on their product brand value related CSR marketing. However, the MNCs have not taken an integrated approach to CSR marketing, considering the overall institutional environment of the host country.

Research limitations/implications

On the basis of very weak regulatory constraints on CSR marketing activities, MNCs have the propensity to develop normatively acceptable CSR marketing under very weak formal institutional pressures. The findings suggest the need for developing an integrative approach to the CSR strategies of MNCs, comprehensively incorporating regulatory, economic, and socio-cultural as well as various stakeholders’ perspectives.

Originality/value

The authors take the institution-based approach to MNCs’ CSR marketing in the context of the developing economy, which extends the extant MNC and international marketing literature. Particularly, MNCs’ CSR marketing legitimacy depends highly on the adaptation to local norms, leading to the importance of the normative pillar of institutionalization in developing economies.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 32 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

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Article
Publication date: 13 August 2019

Anita D. Bhappu and Ulrike Schultze

Bridging noted gaps in the sharing economy and corporate social responsibility (CSR) literatures, the purpose of this paper is to investigate how an organization-sponsored…

Abstract

Purpose

Bridging noted gaps in the sharing economy and corporate social responsibility (CSR) literatures, the purpose of this paper is to investigate how an organization-sponsored sharing platform – a new class of information technology (IT) and the sharing economy ideal – is given meaning as a CSR program for internal stakeholders.

Design/methodology/approach

The research involves phone interviews conducted with site coordinators of the Zimride by Enterprise® ridesharing platform in 25 organizations.

Findings

This case study reveals that two component processes of organizational sensemaking – sensegiving and sensebreaking – are underlying micromechanisms used by organizations to enact a sponsored sharing platform as a CSR program. Qualitative analyses demonstrate that every meaning given to Zimride remained open to sensebreaking during its implementation. As such, site coordinators were continuously drawn into sensemaking about Zimride’s cognitive, linguistic and conative dimensions as a CSR program and had to exert ongoing effort to stabilize its socially (re)constructed meaning within their organization. Furthermore, site coordinators’ sensegiving narrative about Zimride was often undermined by their sensebreaking communications and organizational actions, albeit unintentionally.

Research limitations/implications

Sponsoring a sharing platform to facilitate collaborative consumption can deliver triple bottom line benefits for both organizations and their members, but it may not. The key to accruing this potential shared value lies is how site coordinators navigate organizational sensemaking about these IT-enabled CSR programs.

Originality/value

This paper provides valuable insights into these sensemaking processes and develops a prescriptive framework for enacting an organization-sponsored sharing platform as a CSR program.

Details

Internet Research, vol. 29 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1066-2243

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Article
Publication date: 8 August 2009

Maurizio Zollo, Mario Minoja, Lourdes Casanova, Kai Hockerts, Peter Neergaard, Susan Schneider and Antonio Tencati

This paper aims to juxtapose two separate perspectives on corporate social responsibility (CSR) in terms of their ability to explain the cognitive alignment between

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2775

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to juxtapose two separate perspectives on corporate social responsibility (CSR) in terms of their ability to explain the cognitive alignment between managers and stakeholders on what constitutes the social responsibility of the focal firm, and to explain social performance.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors take two perspectives: that of stakeholder engagement, which has historically characterized the debate on CSR; and that of internal change processes required to integrate CSR in a firm's operations. The authors analyze data from 427 interviews, of which 209 were with managers and 219 with stakeholders of 19 multinational firms in eight sectors, to assess the extent of cognitive alignment between managers and stakeholders on the conceptualization of CSR for the relevant firm, to determine which of the two theoretical perspectives is connected with the degree of cognitive alignment, and to determine which of the two is connected with the perception of corporate social performance (CSP).

Findings

The data examined show no evidence that the degree of sophistication in stakeholder engagement practices is connected with either the magnitude of cognitive gaps, or the level of CSP; whereas the degree of integration in internal operations is connected with both narrower cognitive gaps and higher CSP.

Originality/value

This paper tackles for the first time the problem of measuring and explaining the gaps between managers and stakeholders about their cognitive representations of CSR. The key result of the analysis is that the standard conceptualization of CSR as a stakeholder engagement process does not suffice neither to explain the variation across firms in their managers' cognitive alignment with stakeholders, nor to explain inter‐firm variation in social performance. The strongest explanation for both alignment and performance comes from the extent to which the firm has actually invested in internal change processes aimed at integrating the principles of CSR in the operations and strategies of the firm.

Details

Corporate Governance: The international journal of business in society, vol. 9 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1472-0701

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Article
Publication date: 23 September 2020

Jiseon Ahn, Man Ling Wong and Jookyung Kwon

Given the important role of corporate social responsibility (CSR) to enhance company performance, the purpose of this paper is to fill the existing gaps in the hotel CSR

Abstract

Purpose

Given the important role of corporate social responsibility (CSR) to enhance company performance, the purpose of this paper is to fill the existing gaps in the hotel CSR literature via application of the loyalty formation mechanism and conceptualizations of different aspects of CSR initiatives.

Design/methodology/approach

The current study examines the effect of environmental and social CSR strategies on multidimensional brand loyalty of hotel customers (i.e. cognitive, affective and conative). This study uses the partial least squares–structural equation modeling to examine the effect of CSR types on multidimensional loyalty.

Findings

The results reveal that environmental and social CSR strategies have a significant positive effect on all three loyalty responses of hotel customers with a different level of power. Especially, environmental CSR is highly correlated with conative loyalty, while social CSR is highly correlated with cognitive and affective loyalty responses.

Research limitations/implications

Limited studies have applied the multidimensional attitudinal loyalty in the CSR context. Thus, this study brings theoretical and practical implications. The findings of this study indicate that customers’ perception of hotel CSR could be directly incorporated into their patronized attitudes.

Originality/value

This study provides an empirical guideline for monitoring CSR initiatives from the customers’ perspectives.

Details

International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-669X

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 10 December 2018

Irina Lock and Charlotte Schulz-Knappe

Companies in challenged industries such as fashion often struggle to communicate credibly with their stakeholders about their social and environmental achievements…

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5890

Abstract

Purpose

Companies in challenged industries such as fashion often struggle to communicate credibly with their stakeholders about their social and environmental achievements. Credible corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication, however, has been described theoretically as a predictor of legitimacy for organizations in society, but never proven empirically. The purpose of this paper is to test perceived credibility of a CSR website as a main predictor of input and output (pragmatic, cognitive and moral) legitimacy.

Design/methodology/approach

A 2 × 2 between-subjects online experiment with participants recruited from the SoSci Panel (n=321) is conducted on an anonymized website of a fashion company.

Findings

Credible CSR websites result in output (cognitive and pragmatic) legitimacy. However, participation in the CSR decision-making process (input or moral legitimacy) did not matter. Instead, the more subjects accepted the outcome of the CSR communication process, the more they found a company to be legitimate.

Research limitations/implications

The CSR communication process on a website is just one specific example. In other settings, such as social media, the role of participation in the CSR communication process will be different.

Practical implications

Communicating credibly is a key, particularly in challenged industries, such as fashion. Thus, designing credible communication material matters for legitimacy.

Originality/value

The findings for the first time confirm the credibility–legitimacy link in corporate communication empirically. Participation in CSR-related decision-making processes is overrated: the outcome of the CSR communication process is important for stakeholders and their acceptance of a company in society, the participation in the process less. This confirms the idea of CSR as stakeholder expectations management.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 11 February 2019

Enrique Bianchi, Juan Manuel Bruno and Francisco J. Sarabia-Sanchez

The purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of consumers’ perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR). The aim is to provide insight into the effect of…

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17522

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of consumers’ perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR). The aim is to provide insight into the effect of perceived CSR on purchase intention (short-term effect) and corporate reputation (long-term effect), whilst considering the role of brand image, satisfaction (affective and cognitive) and brand loyalty.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample comprised 429 consumers selected using non-probabilistic sampling with age and gender quotas. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to validate the measurement model. Structural equation modelling was used to validate the research hypotheses.

Findings

All direct and mediated influences in the model were significant, except for the effects of perceived CSR on affective satisfaction. Thus, the proposed causal chain is valuable to understand how perceptions of CSR influence purchase intention and perceived reputation.

Research limitations/implications

Perception is considered a dual phenomenon (cognitive and affective). It would be advisable to consider both dimensions in the future. The same is true of affective satisfaction.

Originality/value

Direct and mediated relationships that have previously been studied separately are considered together in a single model. This approach provides a better understanding of how perceived CSR influences purchase intention and reputation.

Details

European Journal of Management and Business Economics, vol. 28 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2444-8494

Keywords

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