A Reluctant Stakeholder? On the Perception of Corporate Social Responsibility Among European Trade Unions

12 Pages Posted: 3 Mar 2008

See all articles by Lutz Preuss

Lutz Preuss

University of London - Royal Holloway College

Abstract

Seen from a national business system perspective, the notion of corporate social responsibility (CSR) emerges as a specifically US-American response to challenges regarding the corporate place in society. With the spread of American capitalism, however, CSR is bound to come into contact and conflict with other approaches to the role of business in society that have been shaped by different national cultures. Within Europe, one such area of potential conflict concerns the role of organised labour in representing employee interests. Studying the perceptions held by European trade unions on stakeholding, as one of the important concepts in the CSR discourse, does indeed reveal a considerable degree of union scepticism of CSR and its terminology. There is, however, also embryonic evidence of at least some unions attempting to link the CSR discourse to traditional union goals. Furthermore, national differences in union responses to CSR are beginning to emerge, which may, in turn, further shape the evolution of national business systems in Europe.

Suggested Citation

Preuss, Lutz, A Reluctant Stakeholder? On the Perception of Corporate Social Responsibility Among European Trade Unions. Business Ethics: A European Review, Vol. 17, Issue 2, pp. 149-160, April 2008, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1100780 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8608.2008.00528.x

Lutz Preuss (Contact Author)

University of London - Royal Holloway College ( email )

School of Management
Egham Hill
Egham, TW20 0EX
United Kingdom

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