November 11, 2019 The Corporate Social Responsibility Newswire

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Global Stakeholder Influence Examined in New Boston College Report

Global Education Research Network study explores impact of global stakeholders in nine countries

Submitted by: Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship

Categories: Corporate Social Responsibility, Research, Reports & Publications

Posted: Nov 19, 2009 – 01:31 PM EST


CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. , Nov. 19 /CSRwire/ - The Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship today released a timely review of the influence of stakeholders and pressure groups in nine countries. The research reflects dynamics such as the spread of market capitalism, increasing wealth and power of business, the mounting pressure for companies to take on greater social and environmental responsibilities and the growing public distrust of business.

The report "Mapping Stakeholder Landscapes" describes how stakeholder groups differ around the world and the need to balance the variation at the local level with interests shared globally. The report is the result of a one-year research project by the Global Education Research Network (GERN), a network of 12 global institutions, including the Boston College Center, focused on responsible business working together. Funded by the UPS Foundation, this is the second report on global corporate citizenship produced by the GERN.

While many business practices are shared universally, social and political realities that can affect the way business is managed can vary greatly among countries. The new report helps corporate social responsibility (CSR) leaders understand differences such as:

  • The U.K. government appears to be the most supportive of CSR, while the U.S. government is much less involved.

  • Developing countries such as Chile and South Africa are deeply influenced by international organizations such as the U.N. Global Compact, while these organizations hold less influence in the United States and Italy.

  • Business associations play a large supportive role in South Africa, but hold little power or credibility in Mexico.

  • The influence of the socially responsible investment (SRI) market is growing in developed countries such as the United States and United Kingdom, but remains almost non-existent in countries such as Chile and the Philippines.

  • Italian media seems to have the greatest appetite for CSR news, while the role of media is rather minimal in Chile, the Philippines and South Africa

"This is essential reading for business leaders," said Chris Pinney, director of research and policy for the Boston College Center. "Companies that understand where the support and pressure for corporate citizenship is coming from are better able to map strategies and devise programs that meet the interests of the company and key stakeholders."

Key findings include:

  • Government is the most powerful and positive force for corporate citizenship globally.

  • Mainstream investors do not yet appreciate or understand the financial value of corporate citizenship.

  • Many stakeholders - especially employees and consumers - are "on the fence" due to a lack of awareness about corporate citizenship and weak social movements advancing these issues.

  • Developing countries differ from developed countries in the influence of certain stakeholder groups such as socially responsible investors and ethical consumers.

The report also provides details, analysis and charts for each country regarding how stakeholders influence issues ranging from market entry to production practices, advertising, community relations and employment. The nine countries examined are: Chile, China, Germany, Italy, Mexico, the Philippines, South Africa, United Kingdom and United States. It also provides country-specific analysis of the levers of influence used by groups as diverse as government, investors, nongovernmental organizations, labor, media and consumers.

The authors of this report are Sylvia Kinnicutt, Philip Mirvis, Ph.D. and Rene Carapinha. Bradley K. Googins, Ph.D. is the principal investigator for the project. Download the report for free (registration required).

The Global Education Research Network (GERN) is a network of 12 global institutions focused on responsible business working together to advance research and education that will build the capacity of businesses worldwide to maximize their benefit to society. It connects academics and researchers who take specific interest in application of corporate citizenship principles, and can offer perspectives from developing and developed economies on issues related to responsible business practice. Its goal is to deconstruct and unpack everyday questions on the role of business in society in a manner that can result in practical application. GERN members who participated in this report are: AIM-Ramon V. del Rosario Sr. Center for Corporate Responsibility at the Asian Institute for Management; the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai, the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship; the Doughty Centre for Corporate Responsibility, Cranfield University School of Management; IDEARSE Center for Corporate Sustainability and Responsibility at Anahuac University; the Center for Corporate Citizenship Deutschland (CCCD); the Center for Responsible Leadership, University of Pretoria; ALTIS, Catholic University of Milan; and Vincular, Center for Corporate Social Responsibility at Catholic University of Valparaiso.

The Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship is a membership-based research organization associated with the Carroll School of Management. It is committed to helping business leverage its social, economic and human assets to ensure both its success and a more just and sustainable world. As a leading resource on corporate citizenship, the Center works with global corporations to help them define, plan, and operationalize their corporate citizenship. Through the insights of its 350 corporate members, the Center creates knowledge, value and demand for corporate citizenship.

For more information, please contact:

Peggy Connolly Director of Marketing and Communications
Phone: 617-552-0722
Phone 2: 617-645-5555


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