Researching CSR Communication: Themes, Opportunities and Challenges

Journal of Management Studies, Forthcoming

61 Pages Posted: 4 Feb 2016

See all articles by Andrew Crane

Andrew Crane

University of Bath - School of Management

Sarah Glozer

University of London - School of Management

Date Written: January 25, 2016

Abstract

Growing recognition that communication with stakeholders forms an essential element in the design, implementation and success of corporate social responsibility (CSR) has given rise to a burgeoning CSR communication literature. However this literature is scattered across various sub-disciplines of management research and exhibits considerable heterogeneity in its core assumptions, approaches and goals. This article provides a thematically-driven review of the extant literature across five core sub-disciplines, identifying dominant views upon the audience of CSR communication (internal/external actors) and CSR communication purpose, as well as pervasive theoretical approaches and research paradigms manifested across these areas. We then set out a new conceptual framework – the 4Is of CSR communications research – that distinguishes between research on CSR Integration, CSR Interpretation, CSR Identity, and CSR Image. This typology of research streams organizes the central themes, opportunities and challenges for CSR communication theory development, and provides a heuristic against which future research can be located.

Keywords: Communication, Corporate image, Corporate social responsibility, Organizational identity, Social reporting, Stakeholder engagement

Suggested Citation

Crane, Andrew and Glozer, Sarah, Researching CSR Communication: Themes, Opportunities and Challenges (January 25, 2016). Journal of Management Studies, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2726879

Andrew Crane (Contact Author)

University of Bath - School of Management ( email )

Claverton Down
Bath, BA2 7AY
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.bath.ac.uk/management/faculty/andrew-crane.html

Sarah Glozer

University of London - School of Management ( email )

Egham
Surrey, Egham TW20 8DG
United Kingdom

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