Essay about Corporate Social Responsibility - the Case of de Beers

3214 Words Nov 28th, 2007 13 Pages

Corporate Social Responsibility, a theory that has evolved since the 1990s, seeks to see businesses be responsible for their actions socially and environmentally. There is an increasing trend by businesses to adopt Corporate Social Responsibility Practices. This paper attempts to define the reasons why this is so, and what strategic issues are faced by companies who adopt these practices. The issue of Corporate Social Responsibility will then be highlighted in a case study of De Beers, the world's leading diamond producer.


Research into the topic of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), has shown that there is no single universally accepted definition. CSR has many
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3. International Codes and Standards – Subscribing to International Codes and Standards, that are not necessarily legally binding, helps avoid government intervention through taxation and regulations (Wikipedia, 2007). These are also often adopted in response to activist attacks, critical media reports, and consumer anxieties (Steiner and Steiner, 2006).
4. Sustainable Development – CSR is closely linked to sustainable development. Corporations are realizing that decisions for the future must not only be based on profits and dividends but on long-term societal and environmental issues, as these will affect financial performance in the future.
5. Competitive Advantage – Corporations are consistently looking for that "edge", that one thing that will differentiate their product from others that are on the market. Good CSR can help to increase brand awareness and the resulting media coverage is free advertising to enhance the firm's reputation…of course bad CSR can have the opposite effect!
6. Risk Management – Companies who are pro-active and adopt good CSR will be seen by the stakeholders as practicing risk management by heading off any future internal and external threats (Story and Price, 2006).
7. The Role of Non– and Inter-governmental Organizations – Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs) are becoming increasingly powerful operators in the global

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