Corporate Social Responsibility: An Empirical Investigation of U.S. Organizations

Adam Lindgreen, Valérie Swaen, Wesley Johnston

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Organizations that believe they should “give something back” to the society have embraced the concept of corporate social responsibility (CSR). Although the theoretical underpinnings of CSR have been frequently debated, empirical studies often involve only limited aspects, implying that theory may not be congruent with actual practices and may impede understanding and further development of CSR. The authors investigate actual CSR practices related to five different stakeholder groups, develop an instrument to measure those CSR practices, and apply it to a survey of 401 U.S. organizations. Four different clusters of organizations emerge, depending on the CSR practice focus. The distinctive features of each cluster relate to organizational demographics, perceived influence of stakeholders, managers’ perceptions of the influence of CSR on performance, and organizational performance.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Business Ethics
Issue numberSupplement 2
Pages (from-to)303-323
Number of pages21
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes

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