Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 88, Issue 2, pp 381–393 | Cite as

“Society is Out There, Organisation is in Here”: On the Perceptions of Corporate Social Responsibility Held by Different Managerial Groups

  • James A. H. S. HineEmail author
  • Lutz Preuss


Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has become an increasingly significant managerial concept, yet the manager as an agent of corporate bureaucracy has been substantially missing from both the analytical and conceptual literature dealing with CSR. This article, which is both interpretative in nature and specific in reference to the U.K. cultural context, represents an attempt at addressing this lacuna by utilising qualitative data to explore the perceptions of managers working in corporations with developed CSR programmes. Exploring managerial perceptions of motives for CSR initiatives, methods of stakeholder engagement, organisational integration of CSR and its impact on managerial work, this study concludes that an instrumental approach dominates, which indicates an external–internal organisational paradox in the design and execution of CSR initiatives.


bureaucratic organisation business ethics corporate ethos corporate social responsibility managerial practices stakeholders 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Business and EconomicsUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghU.K.
  2. 2.Royal Holloway CollegeUniversity of LondonLondonU.K.

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