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Managing Business Ethics: Straight Talk about How to Do It Right, 6th Edition by Katherine A. Nelson, Linda K. Treviño

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CHAPTER 9

CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

INTRODUCTION

Thus far, we have emphasized ethical behavior “inside” the organization. We have discussed why ethical behavior is important at work and how individuals who aim to be ethical can make good ethical decisions. We have also discussed the psychology of ethical decision making, including why individuals with the best of intentions can find it difficult to do what's right. We have outlined what organizations can and should do to create strong ethical cultures that support employee ethics and what managers can and should do, within those cultures, to lead their employees in an ethical direction.

In this chapter's discussion of corporate social responsibility (CSR), we extend beyond the organization to focus on the relationship between the organization and its external stakeholders. In today's highly interconnected, global and transparent world, corporations are finding that social responsibility is essential to fundamental business strategy. They are also discovering that it is difficult to separate “internal” organizational ethics from “external” social responsibility. Although most large companies have separate people and structures to deal with “internal” ethics and “external” social responsibility issues, these efforts are overlapping more and more because both depend on a solid set of ethical values and an organizational culture that supports doing the right thing. For example, making business decisions today to invest in environmentally ...

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