Nowadays, in the world of business the impacts of companies’ activities on the social, environment and community are treated equally meticulous as the companies’ economic obligations (Bravo, Mature & Pina, 2012). According to Ogrizek (2002, cited by Bravo, Matute & Pina, 2012), managers realized that by balancing both of the short-term financial goals and long-term sustainable developments, only then companies will success in future and maintain competitive. Within the context, corporate social responsibility (CSR) came into picture to serve as a source of competitive advantage and value creation as it promotes sustainable business model. CSR has gradually becoming a highlight due to its growing interest on demonstrating its ability to influence consumers’ image perceptions, attitudes, and behaviour through corporate identity; and therefore has resulted to gradual growth in CSR investment in the business world. In this circumstance, the management of corporate identity through CSR is considered very significant for companies to pay priority attention as it serves as a mean to distinguish them from other competitors; hence achieving and maintaining competitive advantage over a long period. This literature review starts with an overview of the CSR and corporate identity conceptualization. Follow by the role of CSR as an element of the corporate identity.
The Role of Corporate Social Responsibility
An Overview of CSR Conceptualization and its Definition
CSR first came into common use in the late 1960s and early 1970s after the formation of the term “stakeholder” by many multinational corporations. In the initial stage, CSR has been described as the duty of companies to go beyond its economic responsibilities taking into consideration of the ethical norms and values as well as legal obligations, and philanthropic issues. Due to the above reason, CSR has been conceptualized as a social obligation for companies (Dahlsrud, 2008, cited by Bravo, Matute & Pina, 2012). Stakeholder-management approaches have been widely used during 1990s replacing the shareholder-value creation paradigms (Stubbs & Cocklin, 2007, cited by Bravo, Matute & Pina, 2012). Due to the shift of management approaches, companies have started to adopt CSR as it is seen to be proactive and voluntary attitude rather than strictly responding to social norms. There are many different terms of CSR. Some known as corporate conscience; some as social performance and some may even defined as sustainable responsible business. Indeed there is considerable common ground between them. CSR is a concept where companies’ business activities are integrated with economic, social and environmental aspects aiming to benefits people, communities and society. According to Jamali (2008, cited by Bravo, Matute & Pina, 2012), CSR promotes the legitimacy of the company and it develops strong long-term reputation to gain and maintain sustainable. CSR has become a burning issue in the business world with its growing influence on consumer behaviour. Consumers tend to demand more out from companies to contribute to the community with some social aspects rather than simply a quality product or service at a low price (Maignan et al., 2005, cited by Marin, Ruiz & Rubio, 2009). CSR is an important tool that can help companies to distinguish from competitors. CSR activities are carried out voluntarily beyond the obligations arising from legislation and they involve the stakeholders who have significant influence on the company. Human capital, stakeholders’ relationship and the environment are the three focusing areas that companies often pay attention to. Reason being these are the areas that may bring positive impacts to the company in a way of increasing productivity and strengthening competitiveness, promoting company image and hence improving efficiency and thus resulting in higher profitability. In summary, CSR is about the management of business processes of...
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