The concept of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has redefined the role of business in the society. Business entities are expected to account for their social and environmental impacts and also make positive contributions to the communities in which they operate. Many business leaders have now accepted that CSR is the ‘right thing to do’. However, the activities of many business organisations have attracted increasing scrutiny. In the process, the culture of mistrust and anti-business sentiments have also increased amongst consumers.
There is no doubt that notions of business accountability through CSR have captivated the imaginations of business practitioners and academics, with both assessing the impacts of business on society and calling for the adoption of more ethical business practices. Although CSR is a comprehensive set of principles calling for fundamental and practical changes to the way businesses operate, it has also put pressure on organisations to minimize their environmental impact, improve consumer and employee rights and operate in a transparent and accountable manner. As such, this diverse agenda of practice and policy changes expected of business is an undoubtedly complex one, which can lead to confusion for many organisations interested in moving from CSR rhetoric to practice.
Read More from the CSRFiles Volume 1 Issue 2, 2011: From Thought To Action