The paper "Opponents of Corporate Social Responsibility" is a good example of business coursework. The relationships between society and business have been studied for a long time. The idea of the duty of the business towards the society and in particular the stakeholders have been widely acknowledged since the 1950’ s thus, increasing the expectations of the society (Moir 2001). Lantos (2001) refers to the corporate social responsibility (CSR) as the way in which organisations integrates economic, social and environmental concerns into their operations and values in an accountable and transparent manner. CSR promotes the accountability of a business vision to a variety of stakeholders where the key areas of concern include the wellbeing of employees, protection of the environment, the community and generally the civil society at present and in future.
Thus, the concept of CSR is supported by the idea that a corporation can no longer act as economic entities that are isolated from the broader society. Thus, CSR is gradually sweeping away the traditional views that are based on profitability, competitiveness and survival (Carroll 1999). Different characteristics of CSR include long-term perspective, accountability to stakeholders, beyond the law and social contract among others.
Carroll (1999) states that long-term economic gain perspective is part of CSR which leads to future profitability and social power. Thus, in addition to short-term profits, businesses also have guaranteed prosperity in a rapidly changing environment. Johnson & Scholes (2002) adds that CSR is beyond the narrow legal, economic and technical requirements of a corporate. It is concerned with the way in which a corporate exceeds the stakeholders’ minimum obligations. According to Lantos (2001), CSR is associated with the social contract given that the authorization of the corporate to buy, sell or enter into a contract is empowered by the stakeholders. CSR is becoming increasingly important in organisations.
This paper discusses why stakeholders have currently given more attention to CSR and the arguments for and against the CSR. According to Cramer, Jonker, & van der Heijen (2004), the key to understanding the CSR is for the corporate to consider a holistic attempt to engage the wide spectrum of the stakeholders. In his explanation of the stakeholder theory, Freeman (1984) described the stakeholders as any group or an individual that is affected or might affect the activities of the organisation.
These include employees, clients, contractors, suppliers, community, government, shareholders, government and non-governmental organisations. Currently, there has been increased attention by the stakeholders towards CSR and various factors and influences that have led to this include globalization, changing social expectations and increasing affluence. Globalization with its focus on multinational enterprises, cross-border trade and global supply chain has resulted to an increased CSR concerns in relation to the protection of the environment, practices of human resources management, and health and safety among others.
Due to advancement in technology such as personal digital assistants and internet among others, it has become easier to track the activities of a corporate and disseminate information in regard to the firm. In addition, non-governmental organisations drawing attention regularly to the practices of the business in which they view as problematic (Waldman et al 2006). Investors and customers are also showing their increased interest in support of business practices that show responsibility. They are also increasing their demands for information on how various firms are addressing the opportunities and risks associated to environmental and social issues.
Thus, the stakeholders are making it clear that these corporations must meet the environmental and social care standards, no matter their location of operation. With a high number of serious as well as high profile breaches of the ethics in the corporate, there has been an elevated mistrust of corporations from the public. In turn, this has led to highlighting the need for improved transparency, ethical standards, corporate governance and accountability. Government, intergovernmental and non-governmental bodies such as the United Nations have developed guidelines, compacts, principles and various instruments and provide social norms in regard to acceptable conduct.
There has been increasing awareness in regard to the limits of government regulatory and legislative initiatives in order to capture all the issues addressed by the CSR (Greenwood, 2001).
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