Dr. Anjana Hazarika
ARCHIE CARROLL’S CSR PYRAMID: A case study of Bajaj Auto Ltd.
Jindal Global Law School
Today, in this complex business environment where all business enterprises are surviving by realizing maximum profits possible, there exists a mechnism called Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) that is providing the required edge towards success. Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is the way a corporation achieves a balance among its economic, social, and environmental responsibilities in its operations so as to address shareholder and other stakeholder expectations. This is because it is a belief in public that for a business, there are obligations to follow in furtherance to profits or economic goals and social responsibilities are being considered under their company goals. According to Wood, the “basic idea of corporate social responsibility is that business and society are interwoven rather than distinct entities” and that expectations are placed on business due to its three roles: as an institution in society, as a particular corporation or organization in society, and as individual managers who are moral actors within the corporation. This paper shall talk about one of the ways to view corporate social responsibility, viz. through Archie Carroll’s CSR Pyramid, which he claims the CSR model to be accepted by a conscientious businessperson and be dealt with four kinds of social responsibility – economic, legal, ethical and philosophical. Later, this paper shall bring in case study of an Indian company, Bajaj Auto Limited, that, more or less, works on the same principles as Carroll’s model and its social responsibilities be scrutinized accordingly, without pitching aside the company’s business motive.
THE PYRAMID OF CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
Expressing his reasoning for a CSR pyramid, Archie Carroll in “The Pyramid of Corporate Social Responsibility: Toward the Moral Management of Organizational Stakeholders” explains that CSR must be framed in such a way that the entire range of business responsibilities can be clutched together. A conscientious businessperson with a moral sense of what is socially right accepts a CSR model whole-heartedly. He suggested that four types of social responsibilities constitute total CSR: economic, legal, ethical and philanthropic and these four categories or components of CSR might be depicted as a pyramid. In furtherance to this, Carroll contends that apart from these kinds of responsibilities being existent from before, they deserve a closer consideration and in recent years, ethical and philanthropic functions have taken a significant place in the business scenario.
* Economic Responsibilities: Business organizations have been the basic economic unit in our society and history is the evidence for the same. They undertake economic responsibilities to provide goods and services to the society. This, being their principal role, built up a want to make an acceptable profit in the process. Subsequently, the idea of achieving maximum profit pierced through so and thus, profits were necessary to achieve carry out other responsibilities. Carroll has summarized some important statements characterizing economic responsibilities; perform in a manner consistent with maximizing earnings per share, committed to being as profitable as possible, maintain a strong competitive position and a high level of operating efficiency and developed a definition of a successful firm to be the one that is consistently profitable. Thus, it is important for any corporation/business organization to respect their economic responsibilities since it is the foundation upon which other responsibilities rest. And hence, this responsibility falls on the bottom of the pyramid (Figure 1).
* Legal Responsibilities: Business...