Unpacking Micro-CSR Through a Computational Literature Review: An Identity Heterogeneity View of Internal Stakeholders

Jiangtao Xie*, Tanusree Jain

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The role of individuals in corporate social responsibility (CSR), or micro-CSR, has garnered increasing scholarly attention. This emphasis of this research is on internal stakeholders (i.e., employees) who design, implement, and structure CSR activities. While theoretically internal stakeholders contain multiple sub-categories of employees (e.g., top management, middle-level managers, or lower-level employees), extant micro-CSR literature has taken a homogenous view of internal stakeholders – that is, it ignores the critical hierarchical and socio-psychological differences among employees. To provide a comprehensive view of micro-CSR scholarship, we employ a novel computational literature review design to analyse the abstracts of 461 research articles published between 1970 and 2021. Our further in-depth analysis of 190 representative papers unravels how micro-CSR research is fragmented and clustered across four sub-fields within management sciences – organisational behaviour, human resource management, corporate governance, and leadership. Building on an identity heterogeneity view of internal stakeholders, we propose a comprehensive research agenda to advance micro-CSR research.
Original languageEnglish
Article number114451
JournalJournal of Business Research
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2024

Bibliographical note

Published online: 07 December 2023.


  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Micro-CSR
  • Literature review
  • Structural topic model
  • Internal stakeholders

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