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While there is substantial agreement that corporate responsibility is concerned with the societal and environmental obligations of business, there is much less certainty about the nature and scope of these obligations. And there is a clear difference between corporate responsibility stemming from a desire to do good (the “normative case”) and that which reflects an enlightened self-interest (the “business case”). We examine corporate responsibility from the perspective of the benefits that companies can gain from implementing “strategic CSR”, especially strengthened corporate and brand reputations and enhanced trust with key stakeholders such as customers, employees, regulatory agencies and investors.

Other benefits include improved risk management, increased revenues from innovation to identify new business opportunities, and reduced costs from efficiency improvements. Firms that strategically integrate CSR into their company culture and operations find themselves doing well and doing good.



“The simple fact is that social and environmental problems are becoming business problems. In part, this is because we live in a closely interconnected world today where businesses are exposed to stricter scrutiny.This ‘goldfish bowl’ reality means that companies must operate with greater responsiveness to ethical concerns and to their social and environmental impacts.The best companies go further by not only protecting their brands and corporate reputations but also seizing opportunities to create value for their stakeholders through proactive efforts to give attention to ethics, corporate social responsibility and sustainability.”

N. Craig Smith INSEAD Chaired Professor of Ethics and Social Responsibility

Academic Director of the CSR & Ethics Research Group