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Predator corporations in India are merely engaged in managing and thus profiting from the crises they themselves have conspired to produce with their destruction of traditional agriculture and local economies and their chemical inputs and genetic engineering.

Considering the openly admitted US-Israeli-Saudi plot to use Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups across the Middle East to counter Iran’s influence, it begs the question whether these same interests are funding terrorism in Pakistan

On going Research Section

The Research World One website publishes news articles, commentary, background research and analysis on a broad range of issues, focussing on social, economic, strategic and environmental processes.

CSR Area

Innovation and employees drive profits

Jordi Surroca (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid) and colleagues find that innovating and empowering employees can lead to improvements in both financial and corporate responsibility performance of firms. What sorts of initiatives lead to these payoffs? The authors suggest product and process improvements that reduce pollution and human resource policies that treat employees fairly.

Market CSR internally to retain top talent

CSR initiatives can be a powerful way to retain top talent. But the details and extent of the initiatives must be communicated clearly and consistently. C.B. Bhattacharya (European School of Management) and colleagues found that only 37 percent of employees were even aware of their firm’s activities. Involve your employees in CSR programs and develop programs that meet their needs if you want to maximize your CSR benefits.

CSR can drive financial performance.

Francesco Perrini (University of Bocconi) and colleagues studied 30 years of research to determine the specific process by which CSR leads to increased revenue and reduced costs. These processes include: CSR reporting practices that strengthen the organization, CSR enhancement of human resource management, and CSR’s contribution to consumer loyalty and satisfaction.

Management Section

Jaepil Choi (Singapore Management University) and Heli Wang (Hong Kong University) found that when a firm performs well, good stakeholder relations help them ride the wave longer. More importantly, when companies suffer financially, relationships with stakeholders help them bounce back more quickly. But this takes advance planning –waiting until a crisis to build bridges won’t provide the same resilience.

Pascual Berrone (IESE Business School) and colleagues find that family-owned corporations demonstrate better environmental performance than other corporations. Why? The manager of a family-owned firm takes a long-term view of business success and places greater importance on reputation and recognition, since his or her personal reputation is tied to the company’s. Berrone’s observation: “If you want to improve your environmental performance – and your environmental reputation – you cannot treat your company solely as a money-making machine.”

Volker Hoffman and Timo Busch (both from ETH Zurich) developed a set of four standard metrics to build carbon into your company’s planning, activity, and reporting: 1) risk; 2) exposure; 3) dependency; and 4) intensity. These physical and financial indicators can help managers, investors and policy makers make more balanced assessments of companies’ relative carbon performance. A recent update to this research offers specific metrics for different sectors. Busch notes: “Standardized measures for carbon intensity may, in time, allow for ‘low-carbon’ competition across firms in an industry.”

Crisis Section

Jonathan Doh (Villanova University) and colleagues found that when a company is removed from a social index like KLD, its stock can lose substantially – on average, more than 1.2 percent of its value or $4 million. However, they also discovered a good CSR reputation builds trust and respect, so these firms don’t get jostled if they’re added or deleted from a list.

Michael Luchs (College of William and Mary) and colleagues discovered consumers value sustainability when looking for gentle products like baby shampoo. But, sustainability can be detrimental when seeking tough products such as athletic shoes or trucks. Consumers link more sustainable products with gentle attributes. So, when marketing “tough” products like car shampoo, companies should explicitly paint green products as “strong” and associate the products with an established brand name.

Julian Marshall (University of Minnesota) and Michael Toffel (Harvard Business School) have developed a practical framework decision-makers can harness to rank the importance of potential CSR initiatives. This hierarchy ranges from human survival at the highest level to values and aesthetic preferences at the lowest level, helping managers and policy-makers identify the most pertinent sustainability activities to pursue.