Business Ethics, the Environment and Responsibility 18 (1):83-93 (2009)
AbstractThis paper seeks to analyse small- and medium-sized enterprise (SME) managers' representations of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and CSR communication in a corporate communication perspective. The basic question is: how strategic is CSR communication in SMEs? Corporate communication and CSR theories are used to establish an ideal typology of CSR concepts informing an analysis of qualitative data in the form of interviews with three middle managers in two Danish SMEs. A CSR communication model published earlier by the authors is challenged from a SME perspective. Results from an Internet-based questionnaire survey of 1071 SMEs pave the way for the analysis. Our analysis shows that SME managers clearly have an inside-out approach to CSR, with a strong emphasis on the internal (corporate culture) dimension. However, SMEs and/or SME managers tend not to communicate externally about the CSR activities of the company. Based on these findings, the paper argues that CSR communication in SMEs is challenged by the global economy and is under revision. The contribution of the paper is to provide an insight into SMEs' present stage in relation to a possible future approach to strategic CSR communication. The paper also reminds us that SMEs have no interest in turning their local and authentic practice into a forced marketing and branding exercise, leaving them with an artificial picture of who they are and strive to be in the future. They should keep on acting locally but force themselves to think globally.
Added to PP
Historical graph of downloads
References found in this work
Corporate Social Responsibility Evolution of a Definitional Construct.Archie B. Carroll - 1999 - Business and Society 38 (3):268-295.
Concepts and Definitions of CSR and Corporate Sustainability: Between Agency and Communion. [REVIEW]van Marrewijk Marcel - 2003 - Journal of Business Ethics 44 (2-3):95-105.
Parallel Universes: Companies, Academics, and the Progress of Corporate Citizenship.Sandra Waddock - 2004 - Business and Society Review 109 (1):5-42.
From CSR1 to CSR2 The Maturing of Business-and-Society Thought.William C. Frederick - 1994 - Business and Society 33 (2):150-164.
Corporate Sustainability Conference 2002: The Impact of CSR on Management Disciplines.Marcel van Marrewijk - 2003 - Journal of Business Ethics 44 (2/3):89-93.
Citations of this work
Corporate Social Responsibility in Small-and Medium-Size Enterprises: Investigating Employee Engagement in Fair Trade Companies.Iain A. Davies & Andrew Crane - 2010 - Business Ethics, the Environment and Responsibility 19 (2):126-139.
Corporate Social Responsibility in Small-and Medium-Size Enterprises: Investigating Employee Engagement in Fair Trade Companies.Iain A. Davies & Andrew Crane - 2010 - Business Ethics: A European Review 19 (2):126-139.
Stakeholder Salience for Small Businesses: A Social Proximity Perspective.Merja Lähdesmäki, Marjo Siltaoja & Laura J. Spence - 2019 - Journal of Business Ethics 158 (2):373-385.
Acting Out of Compassion, Egoism, and Malice: A Schopenhauerian View on the Moral Worth of CSR and Diversity Management Practices.Thomas Köllen - 2016 - Journal of Business Ethics 138 (2):215-229.
Quantitative Content Analysis as a Method for Business Ethics Research.Irina Lock & Peter Seele - 2015 - Business Ethics: A European Review 24:S24-S40.
Similar books and articles
SMEs and the Fallacy of Formalising CSR.Yves Fassin - 2008 - Business Ethics, the Environment and Responsibility 17 (4):364-378.
CSR in SMEs: Do SMEs Matter for the CSR Agenda?Mette Morsing & Francesco Perrini - 2009 - Business Ethics, the Environment and Responsibility 18 (1):1-6.
Pushing Forward Sme Csr Through a Network: An Account From the Catalan Model.David Murillo & Josep M. Lozano - 2009 - Business Ethics, the Environment and Responsibility 18 (1):7-20.