Wednesday, February 1, 2012

What is CSR? Europe vs. US

I have this idea in my head that corporate social responsibility means corporations must do good at all times, give back to communities and stay ethical. I wanted to look up other definitions to make sure I was on the right track so I typed in CSR definition. The first thing that popped up (after the wikipedia definition) was this site:

After reading what the article said I found I wasn't to far off with my definition of CSR. It fit into what the website said. What I found interesting though is how between different countries the definition of CSR is thought of differently. In the states CSR is defined as companies making money and paying taxes but it is in good practice to donate a share of these profits to charities. Very straight forward. In Europe they think of CSR as a businesses main focus and the communities surrounding invest in it due to their ethical business ways. It shows to me that the States is far more money driven then Europe. In the US you make money and help others after that in Europe it seems the other way around. This of course is just in each countries definition of CSR so I looked into if this held any truth to it. This website helped a lot:

This website made Europe seem like it is ahead of the US when it comes to CSR business practices. The States are less regulated then Europe meaning US corporations can be more creative and products are not inspected as thoroughly as they are in Europe. This freedom in the States can allow them to get away with things that are not very responsible. The States corporations personalize themselves by having CEO's shown in the news frequently. It makes these CEO's seem like celebrities and they sometimes can get away with things they normally wouldn't be able to because of that. In Europe the head of the corporations are shown on the news as committees and not as one individual. People or consumers are more concerned with CSR in Europe, the states are catching up now. What does this mean for us Canadians who usually just follow in the states footsteps, are we behind in the CSR times as well?

Leah McGarrett

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