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The Institutional Factors of the Corporate Social Responsibility Development in the Central European


Business Administration and Management

The Institutional Factors of the Corporate Social Responsibility Development in the Central European

Name and surname of author:

Mária Horehájová, Jana Marasová

Year:
2008
Issue:
2
Keywords:
institution, evolutionary approach, institutional dynamics, corporate social responsibility.
DOI (& full text):
Anotation:
There is a one important reality economists agree on and it is the changing role of businesses in society. The way in which the role of businesses in society is growing is given by increased…more
There is a one important reality economists agree on and it is the changing role of businesses in society. The way in which the role of businesses in society is growing is given by increased sensitivity to and awareness of environmental and ethical issues. Issues like environmental damage, improper treatment of workers, and faulty production that inconveniences or endangers customers are more and more in the centre of peoples‘ attention. These trends contribute to the pressure on companies to operate in an economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable way. One of the solutions that can improve corporate social behaviour is the CSR policy. The European Commission published several Communications on CSR with the objective to help companies integrate corporate social responsibility into the way they do business, every day. With the enlargement of the European Union the issue of the development of CSR in the Central European Countries appeared. The transformation of centrally planned economy to free market economy brought a new view of the role of company in society. It was necessary to reformulate company‘s objectives on one hand and its roles on the other hand. In this situation the way of implementation of the CSR policy to the company‘s behaviour, especially company‘s investment decisions, became the issue of economic research. Considering continual institutional changes in the CEC the evolutionary approach to institutions was chosen as the research method. In order to identify the specific features of introduction of CSR in the CEC, Bulgarian, Czech, Slovak and Romanian companies were chosen as the case studies. The application of the evolutionary approach to institutions required defining what an institution means. At the same time the three institutional dynamics principles were identified based on several theoretical analyses of the institutional dynamics: the causes of emergence of CSR, the mechanism at work, and the actors involved in this dynamics. The evolutionary approach to institutions in the CEC also required reminding of the main features of the socialist unit of production. The first outcome of the research of companies‘ behaviour lies in the identification of several main causes of company‘s acting in a social responsible way. Secondly, the mechanism of CSR was described in two ways as the continuity-based and innovation-based CSR. Finally, the main actors of the CSR were analysed in terms of hierarchical, participative and minimalist CSR. In spite of the EU integration process, this research showed that it seemed difficult to expect in a near future a convergence of the socially responsible practises in the new EU member states. The main reasons for that are linked to the resistance and the legacies of the new member states as well as to the heterogeneity of the European model of CSR.
Section:
Business Administration and Management

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