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Corporate Social Responsibility and Strategic Performance: Realizing A Competitive Advantage through Corporate Social Reputation and a Stakeholder Network Approach

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Date Issued:
2007
Summary:
This study provides an exploratory investigation of the link between Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Firm Competitive Advantage. It poses two primary research questions (1) What valuable and rare resource does the firm acquire through CSR? and 2) How does the firm's approach to stakeholder management influence its ability to protect and enhance the value of this resource? Corporate Social Reputation, the perception of the firm by its internal and external stakeholders, is argued to be the valuable and rare resource that CSR provides. By building positive stakeholder relationships through CSR the firm is able to positively influence stakeholder assessment and gain 'reputational capital'. The value of reputational capital lies in its ability to promote operational efficiency and engender product differentiation, which independently as well as in tandem, grant firms superior performance over their competitors. Corporate Social Reputation is also expected to be positively influenced by the finn's adoption of a 'network' approach to stakeholder management. Two specific network attributes: extensiveness and consistency are argued to promote reputational capital growth. Network Extensiveness is determined by the number and diversity of firmstakeholder relationships, whereas Network Consistency is concerned with the variability of firm behavior across its entire stakeholder network. The hypothesized model was evaluated via a longitudinal study of one hundred and fifty eight firms from multiple industries. Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) was employed to assess path coefficients as well as the goodness of fit of the measurement and structural models. The results provide support for the positive influence of CSR on Corporate Social Reputation, but no support for a significant relation between either Network Extensiveness or Network Consistency and Corporate Social Reputation. Also, the results indicate that Corporate Social Reputation directly, positively and significantly contributes to a firm's ability to achieve and sustain a Competitive Advantage for both an internal (Return on Assets) and external (Tobin's q) measure of firm financial performance. Further, the findings suggest that the contribution of CSR to financial performance may be indirect and facilitated through a step-wise process which requires the attainment of a positive and superior Corporate Social Reputation before Competitive Advantage can be achieved.
Title: Corporate Social Responsibility and Strategic Performance: Realizing A Competitive Advantage through Corporate Social Reputation and a Stakeholder Network Approach.
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Name(s): Peters, Richard C., author
Golden, Peggy A., Thesis advisor
Florida Atlantic University, Degree grantor
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Date Created: 2007
Date Issued: 2007
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Place of Publication: Boca Raton, Fla.
Physical Form: application/pdf
Extent: 197 p.
Language(s): English
Summary: This study provides an exploratory investigation of the link between Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Firm Competitive Advantage. It poses two primary research questions (1) What valuable and rare resource does the firm acquire through CSR? and 2) How does the firm's approach to stakeholder management influence its ability to protect and enhance the value of this resource? Corporate Social Reputation, the perception of the firm by its internal and external stakeholders, is argued to be the valuable and rare resource that CSR provides. By building positive stakeholder relationships through CSR the firm is able to positively influence stakeholder assessment and gain 'reputational capital'. The value of reputational capital lies in its ability to promote operational efficiency and engender product differentiation, which independently as well as in tandem, grant firms superior performance over their competitors. Corporate Social Reputation is also expected to be positively influenced by the finn's adoption of a 'network' approach to stakeholder management. Two specific network attributes: extensiveness and consistency are argued to promote reputational capital growth. Network Extensiveness is determined by the number and diversity of firmstakeholder relationships, whereas Network Consistency is concerned with the variability of firm behavior across its entire stakeholder network. The hypothesized model was evaluated via a longitudinal study of one hundred and fifty eight firms from multiple industries. Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) was employed to assess path coefficients as well as the goodness of fit of the measurement and structural models. The results provide support for the positive influence of CSR on Corporate Social Reputation, but no support for a significant relation between either Network Extensiveness or Network Consistency and Corporate Social Reputation. Also, the results indicate that Corporate Social Reputation directly, positively and significantly contributes to a firm's ability to achieve and sustain a Competitive Advantage for both an internal (Return on Assets) and external (Tobin's q) measure of firm financial performance. Further, the findings suggest that the contribution of CSR to financial performance may be indirect and facilitated through a step-wise process which requires the attainment of a positive and superior Corporate Social Reputation before Competitive Advantage can be achieved.
Identifier: FA00000609 (IID)
Note(s): College of Business
Dissertation (Ph.D.)--Florida Atlantic University, 2007.
Subject(s): Social Responsibility of Business
Industrial Management--Moral and Ethical Aspects
Organizational Effectiveness
Strategic Planning
Competition--Social Aspects
Held by: Florida Atlantic University Digital Libraries
Sublocation: Digital Library
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fau/fd/FA00000609
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Restrictions on Access: Copyright © is held by the author with permission granted to Florida Atlantic University to digitize, archive and distribute this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Restrictions on Access: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Host Institution: FAU
Is Part of Series: Florida Atlantic University Digital Library Collections.