, Volume 80, Issue 4, pp 711-725
Date: 26 Jun 2007

The Corporate Social Performance Content of Innovation in the U.K.

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This article investigates the influence of innovation on the relationship between corporate strategy and social issues. Specifically, we employ firm-level data for a large sample of U.K. companies drawn from a diverse range of industrial sectors to investigate, given innovation, the determinants of both the probability that the innovation brings reduced environmental impacts and/or improved health and safety, and the strength of this effect. In this connection, we find evidence of a dichotomy between product and process innovations, and roles for firm size, industrial sector, a foreign market presence, access to various information sources (e.g. universities and government research organisations) and the extent to which activities are constrained by regulation. Furthermore, we find a tendency for the influences of many of these factors to vary between older and newer firms.

Stephen Pavelin is a Reader in Economics at the University of Reading, UK. His current research agenda focuses upon the application of economic analysis to key issues relating to corporate social responsibility, such as the effect of corporate social performance on the reputation and financial performance of firms. Recent publications include articles in the Journal of Management Studies, the Journal of Business Research, the International Journal of Industrial Organisation, the Journal of Business Ethics, Financial Management, the Journal of Business Finance and Accounting, Business Ethics: A European Review and the European Management Journal.
Lynda A. Porter is a Lecturer in Economics at the University of Reading, UK. Her current research agenda focuses upon public policy issues in international economics, including FDI promotion and international competition in corporate tax rates, but also encompasses corporate social responsibility- largely focussing upon CSR issues that pertain particularly to international business. Her most recent publication appeared in the Journal of Business Research.