Corporate Social Responsibility
Instructions: In this assignment please read the articles in your background readings and respond to the following:
1. Describe corporate social responsibility.
2. Describe corporate social irresponsibility.
3. Where do you stand on the issue of CSR v CSI? Do corporations have a right to ignore their responsibility to some stakeholders in order to add to the short term bottom line?
Provide a well-reasoned response and do some of your own research to provide some examples to support your arguments.
Corporate social responsibility versus corporate social irresponsibility in Management & Marketing
Corporate social responsibility (CSR)
Corporate social responsibility is a broad concept applied in business practice, and its definition varies from one organization to another. However, CSR can generally be defined as the approach by the organizations to ensure delivery of social and economic benefits to all stakeholders in the society at large (Lindgreen & Swaen, 2010). According to the definition by each country and organization, there can be some varying measures taken by the businesses in various nations to promote corporate social responsibility covering a wide range of topics such as human rights, management of the organization, health and safety of the people around and the environmental externalities among others. Corporate social responsibility can, therefore, be grouped into four categories which are in line with the normal community morals namely; economic, legal, ethical and philanthropic responsibilities (Lindgreen & Swaen, 2010).
The economic responsibility requires that the business entity is given an opportunity to make a profit for its survival purposes (Popa & Salanta, 2014). In this respect, it is believed that a business that does not make a profit is doomed and it is destined to collapse. The legal responsibility requires firms to obey the rule of law at all-time even if the cost of breaking a set rule is less than the profit made by disobeying the rule (Popa & Salanta, 2014). It, therefore, obligates the organizations to consider obeying the rule law as something that will eventually bring out the best results to everyone. The ethical responsibility on its side requires the business entities to always doing the right thing irrespective of what is stipulated in the rule of law. The firms are to behave like the human who is living in the community and only does what is accepted by the society taking into consideration the welfare of all the members of the community they are operating in (Popa & Salanta, 2014). finally, the philanthropic responsibility is all about the business doing something the community that is not direct interest to the business activities. In this case, the company goes an extra mile to participate in a community project that is independent of the business and does not stand to add any value to the business (Popa & Salanta, 2014). For example, the business may sponsor a local football club or allow the local youths who want to learn more about the business activities to do so without any charge.
Corporate social irresponsibility (CSI)
In the real sense, there is no specific definition for this concept. However, it is taken to refer to the behavior of firms which do not care about the community welfare and are only profit oriented. For instance, a firm may fail to comply with the rules provided that the profit made in the process supersedes the penalty for disobeying the law (Lindgreen & Swaen, 2010). Moreover, some business may turn a blind eye on the negative externalities that accrue to the community due to their production activities provided that they make a profit. In such a case the firm may pollute the environment thus increasing the cost to people living in the society without any compensation. All these situations make up the concept of corporate social irresponsibility by business organizations.
Corporate social responsibility versus corporate social irresponsibility
The main aim of any business entity is to make a profit and therefore it is expected that each and every organization will work to maximize benefits from its operations. However, making a profit may involve riskier activities that can pollute environment greatly thus rendering it inhabitable to humankind and other organisms. Moreover, it is the responsibility of each and everyone to ensure that they maintain a suitable working environment for everyone working in it (Lindgreen & Swaen, 2010). A philanthropic responsibility enables the organization to appreciate the society as a whole thereby creating a good rapport between the business and the entire community. Furthermore, disobeying the rule of law may lead to the closure of the business in the long run; this will prove to be a greater loss to the owners of the business and the economy as well.
According to the triple bottom line theory, a business is supposed to be part of the community and therefore operate within the three bottom lines namely; economic, social and environmental bottom lines (Popa & Salanta, 2014). The economic bottom line is a long-term course while social one is short term but intertwines with the economic bottom line. A business organization should not ignore the corporate social responsibility to any stakeholders to add to the short-term bottom line. The firm and the community are considered dependent on each other and therefore for the firm to thrive it will require the society’s goodwill and therefore it will be difficult to operate a firm while the society only stands to lose (Lindgreen & Swaen, 2010). For instance, a chloride cell manufacturing company is poised to release a lot of chemicals into the atmosphere which may be poisonous. If these emissions are not controlled the people living in that are likely to perish, in the short run the company may not fill the impact but in the long run, the companies will lose the immediate demand for its products.
We can, therefore, conclude that corporate social responsibility is a virtue that needs to be wholly embraced by every organization for the mutual benefit of the firms and the community as a whole.
Lindgreen, A., & Swaen, V. (2010, March). Corporate Social Responsibility. International Journal of Management Reviews. pp. 1-7. Retrieved from the Trident Online Library.
Popa, M., & Salanta, I. (2014). Corporate social responsibility versus corporate social irresponsibility. Management & Marketing, 9(2), 137–146. Retrieved from Trident University Library.