Fachbereich Ethik und Nachhaltigkeit

Corporate Social Responsibility: A Qualitative Analysis on the Strategy Formulation Process

Marie Wehinger, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (Bachelorarbeit)
Junior Management Science 3(4), 2018, 65-80

The urge for firms to contribute positively towards the society and the environment is increasing significantly. Demands of employees, customers, governments, NGOs and many more are putting firms under pressure to respond accordingly. Thus, it is vital for firms nowadays to formulate effective corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategies which provide guidelines for the firm’s commitment towards the challenges of the society and environment. Plenty of research exists on the components of CSR strategy formulation, particularly regarding stakeholders, organizational vision and the CEO’s influence. However, it is important to consider the whole process of the strategy formulation and to link the components together. By means of a qualitative analytical approach, I show that the internal input provided by the CEO and the CSR team plays an important role in deciding on certain CSR initiatives. Furthermore, the strategic fit between the potential CSR issues and the core business is a significant criterion. Through assessing the potential value creation, and thus the expected impact scope, prioritizations of CSR issues take place. The continuous monitoring and evaluation of the stakeholders’ needs form an iterative process which leads to a constantly changing CSR strategy focus of the firm. My aim in this paper is to contribute to the understanding of CSR strategy formulation through a CSR strategy formulation process model. The model provides insights into firms’ CSR strategy formulation from which I derive implications for management and further research.

Keywords: Corporate Social Responsibility, Strategy Formulation, Sustainability

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What makes a responsible leader? – An empirical analysis of how personality characteristics affect leadership behaviour

Mischa Haberthür, Universität Zürich (Masterarbeit)
Junior Management Science 3(3), 2018, 1-37

This master’s thesis contributes to the ongoing discussion on responsible leadership and its antecedents by empirically analysing the relationship between various traits and responsible leadership effectiveness. In a quantitative experimental research study, the participants (62 men and 32 women) first filled out an online survey assessing their gender, age, and major field of study as well as their score in the personality dimensions honesty-humility, openness to experience, empathic concern, perspective taking, and holism. Afterwards, their second-to-fourth digit ratio was measured, and men had the option of providing a saliva sample which was used to determine their testosterone level. Finally, the participants’ performance in the leadership roles professional, facilitator, citizen, idea-provider, and total was assessed with a think-aloud protocol. By performing a multiple linear regression analysis, I found that empathic concern positively influences the roles facilitator and total, holism the role citizen, and perspective taking the role idea-provider. I also found that men and psychology students are less likely to perform well in the role idea-provider and that openness to experience negatively affects facilitator.

Keywords: Responsible leadership, Ethical leadership, Corporate social responsibility,
Stakeholder approach, Personality characteristics

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Do Elite Students Good? The Impact of Social Background on CSR Perception – an Empirical Analysis

Annika Kreil, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (Bachelorarbeit)
Junior Management Science 1(2), 2016, 61-83

More and more companies are pursuing corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives. Current scientific literature mainly evaluates the underlying economic and non-economic motivations of CSR. This thesis aims to expand the current framework and empirically investigate the impact of managers’ social background on CSR perception. Therefore, I first review Bourdieu’s theory of social reproduction with a special notion of the different forms of capital and the concept of habitus as well as existing research on CSR perception with an emphasis on stakeholder theory. In a next step, I developed an online questionnaire that combines these two concepts. This questionnaire was sent to students of the Bavarian EliteAcademy, a program that educates future leaders from all social backgrounds. The results of the regression reveal that social background is influential in determining the importance put on shareholder interests. Moreover, students align their ranking of stakeholder importance with their self-perception as stakeholders. Self-perception as shareholders shows most correlations with social background variables. These findings support the hypothesis that social background affects CSR perception. It is especially interesting that students who might assume future leadership positions are already now united by a similar habitus.

Keywords: Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Stakeholder theory, Bourdieu’s Social Reproduction Theory, Habitus, Leadership

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Effektive Prävention ethisch-moralisch bedingter Unternehmenskrisen – Eine fallbasierte Untersuchung in Deutschland und den USA

Sonja A.-M. Hammel, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (Masterarbeit)
Junior Management Science 1(1), 2016, 216-274

Unternehmen geraten schon lange nicht mehr nur mit positiven Meldungen in die Schlagzeilen der Presse. Unternehmen sind Organisationen, die sich aus Menschen zusammensetzen. Menschen treffen zuweilen ethisch-moralisch bedenkliche Entscheidungen, lassen sich z.B. zu korruptem oder betrügerischem Verhalten hinreißen. Solch ein Verhalten kann sich, auf die gesamte Organisation bezogen, über Prozesse positiver Rückkopplungseffekte, zu starren Strukturen und festgefahrenen Verhaltensmustern entwickeln. Einmal festgefahrene Strukturen können auf Dauer nur noch durch ein Aufrütteln des ganzen Unternehmens, z.B. in Form einer Unternehmenskrise, aufgebrochen werden. Diese Schilderung spiegelt eine ethisch-moralisch bedingte Unternehmenskrise aus der Perspektive der Theorie Organisationaler Pfadabhängigkeit wider.

Mittels einer fallbasierten Untersuchung selektierter DAX 30- und Dow Jones 30-Krisenfälle im Zeitraum von 1988 bis 2014 schafft diese explorative Arbeit ein tieferes Verständnis ethisch-moralisch bedingter Unternehmenskrisen. Eine integrierte Betrachtung ethisch-moralisch bedingter Unternehmenskrisen und der Theorie Organisationaler Pfadabhängigkeit soll Ansatzpunkte für eine effektive Prävention dieser Krisen liefern. Zu diesem Zweck wird eine vergleichende Analyse besonders für diese Art von Unternehmenskrisen anfälliger bzw. unanfälliger Unternehmen durchgeführt. Dabei werden Maßnahmen wie Reputationsmanagement, Corporate Governance oder Compliance-Programme etc. auf ihre Eignung als Krisenpräventionsmaßnahmen untersucht.

Die vorliegende Arbeit liefert wertvolle Erkenntnisse zum Verständnis ethisch-moralisch bedingter Unternehmenskrisen. Abgeleitet werden darüber hinaus qualitative Ansätze für ein Pfadbrechen, d.h. das Nutzen einer solchen Unternehmenskrise als Chance, um mit festgefahrenen Strukturen und Verhaltensweisen, also dem Pfad, zu brechen, um künftige ethisch-moralisch bedingte Unternehmenskrisen zu vermeiden.

Keywords: Prävention von Unternehmenskrisen, Krisenmanagement, Organisationale Pfadabhängigkeit, Qualitative Untersuchung (USA/ Deutschland)

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