Archive for publications, October 2011

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[ecrea] Invitation to contribute to CSR Communication book

Fri Oct 14 16:05:08 GMT 2011

Invitation to contribute to CSR Communication book.

_Volume Title_: Communicating Corporate Social Responsibility: lessons from theory and practice

_Editors:_ Ralph Tench, Brian Jones and William Sun, Leeds Business School, Leeds Metropolitan University, Leeds, UK

_Publisher_: Emerald


Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a business and academic issue that attracts significant interest and discussion across both practitioner (business) and academic contexts. What is less explored is the role and impact that communicating messages about CSR play. This edited collection of papers seeks to address this knowledge gap by helping to establish the communication of CSR as a field of study in its own right.

The remit of this book is therefore to better understand communicator's role in sharing experiences of corporately responsible behaviour through CSR as well as the issues of CSI (Corporate Social Irresponsibility) which are evident through violations, wrongdoings and poor business practices especially those that impact negatively on society and the broader environment. There is a need to academically benchmark the role of communication of CSR so as to better understand how business practices might manage and improve performance.

There are many significant questions on CSR that need to be addressed by both the academic and business communities. Why does CSR fail in practice? Exactly how, in theory as well as practice, does the practice of communication and public relations and CSR connect and operate? What is the nature of the relationship between the concepts? Do we need to design and implement better communication and management approaches to ensure that corporations are responsible to shareholders and other stakeholders? Indeed, there is a need for more discussion and debate on these matters so that answers, policy prescriptions and new informed practices might emerge and evolve.

There are three general categories of CSR communications:

(1) Internal CSR communication (i.e., CSR management issues within the corporation, such as leadership, corporate culture, CSR strategies, and managerial structures and mechanisms).

(2) External CSR communication (i.e., corporate communication with stakeholders directly or through agencies). There are many issues in here, for example, whether there should be one-way or two-way communication, whether corporations should communicate directly or in better ways through agencies or other third parties, what role the agencies and media should play in the communication processes, or whether corporations engage in propaganda for themselves or communicate in genuine and good faith, how the information issue can be addressed in a complex and dynamic business environment, etc.

In the above two areas, perhaps one of the major concerns is how the corporation should/could be responsible for its genuine and effective communications with its employees and external stakeholders.

(3) Intercultural CSR communication (i.e., corporate communication across cultures, particularly, across national cultural boundaries). There has been a major concern with the different understanding of CSR in different societal contexts with different traditions, cultures, values, ideologies and religions. This increases the difficulty of applying CSR into international business. Some key debates include whether we should have universal CSR principles or more adapted CSR, and how to deal with societal or conditional differences when promoting CSR.

The book will serve to advance debates in CSR and offer a collection of papers that will help define the field of CSR communication.

The above serves to act as an indicator as to how the book might be structured but the editors also see this as a way of eliciting:

(a.) Conceptual and thought pieces but also;

(b.) Chapters that offer a critical approach to the study of CSR and how it is communicated;

(c.) Case studies of corporate wrongdoing, misdemeanours, or irresponsible behaviour/practices and how communication plays a role;

(d.) Case study examples of corporations moving from "doing bad" to "doing good" i.e. linking into the theme of the Amsterdam conference

(e.) Cases of poor communication of CSR or that;

(f.) Equate CSR with PR/communications/greenwashing. This last point and the conference theme might allow us to devote a section of the book to the issue of communicating CSI.

These are examples of what might be included and are not prescriptive in any sense. Other topic areas related to the communication of CSR are and would be welcome.

The book seeks to develop critical analysis of CSR and communication. New research insights and theoretical perspectives and approaches are welcomed. Mixed research methods including case studies, literature reviews, theoretical analysis and empirical studies including qualitative and quantitative are encouraged. Chapters may be exploratory in nature. They should offer substantive analysis of issues, themes and topics. Where appropriate, broader based conceptual, reflective and analytical pieces may for illustrative purposes, be linked with, specific issues such as for example the global financial crisis. Key questions and issues addressed could be approached from a predominantly communication or a CSR perspective or a combination of both.


Please e-mail for a full brief to:

Dr Brian Jones, Leeds Business School, Leeds Metropolitan University, UK

Email: (b.t.jones /at/ <mailto:(b.t.jones /at/>

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