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The Marketer's Handbook: Reassessing Marketing Techniques for Modern Business by Laurie Young

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cmp03uf001CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY (CSR)

Application: Reputation Management, Positioning

The Concept

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is self-imposed responsible behaviour by businesses and other organizations. It is a marketing issue because, first, it is a response to consumers, employees, communities, stakeholders, and other members of society. Secondly, it has a profound effect on reputation, buyers’ willingness to do business with companies and, eventually, profit.

CSR policy ensures that businesses monitor and support law, ethical standards, and international norms. It also prompts them to embrace responsibility for the impact of their activities on the environment. In fact, there is an increasing expectation that businesses will proactively promote the public interest by encouraging community development (particularly in third world nations) and voluntarily cut out dubious practices, regardless of legality (such as the use of child labour by subcontractors). CSR is the deliberate inclusion of public interest in corporate decision making, and the honouring of a “triple bottom line”: people, planet, profit. It is also known as: “corporate conscience”, “corporate citizenship”, “responsible business”, “sustainable responsible business” (SRB); or “corporate social performance”.

Some argue that CSR distracts from the fundamental aim of a business; others that it is nothing more ...

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