Title: Definitional imprecisions in strategic and non-strategic Corporate Social Responsibility

Authors: Glen Kurokawa, Darryl R.J. Macer

Addresses: Regional Unit for Social and Human Sciences in Asia and the Pacific Region UNESCO Bangkok, 920 Sukhumvit Road, Prakanong, Bangkok 10110, Thailand. ' Regional Advisor for Social and Human Sciences in Asia and the Pacific UNESCO Bangkok, 920 Sukhumvit Road, Prakanong, Bangkok 10110, Thailand

Abstract: A fundamental tension between strategic and non-strategic Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) exists. The former is about CSR for profit-maximisation while the latter is independent of profit. Given, the intensity of discourse and dialogue underway regarding CSR the distinction between these two classes of CSR needs to be more precisely defined. Well-founded consensus is harder to build, whether in academia, the business world or the rest of society, the less informed are the decisions made regarding CSR. This article argues that the debate between strategic and non-strategic CSR suffers from significant definitional problems that plague discussion and debate involving CSR which involve the terms |social benefit| and |profit|. These are addressed through a perspective that incorporates these definitional uncertainties. The latter leads to several prescriptions: increased awareness of imprecision, more case-study approaches for CSR and increased empirical understanding of definitional imprecisions.

Keywords: business ethics; business social responsibility; BSR; corporate ethics; strategic CSR; corporate social responsibility; definition; social benefit; profit; imprecision; uncertainty.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMCP.2008.021270

International Journal of Management Concepts and Philosophy, 2008 Vol.3 No.2, pp.121 - 133

Available online: 14 Nov 2008 *

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