Opportunities and risks of CSR for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises

The study highlights both the opportunities and risks related to the application of CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) as a corporate strategy. The analysis identifies a number of risks such as greenwashing, systemizing its forms and manifestations and categorizing them. It is shown that all risks stem from the danger that control mechanisms fail or from a lack of self-enforcing agreements. On the basis of eight enterprises that are practicing CSR successfully, the study describes the methods that can be implemented to minimize the risks associated with CSR. The outcome shows that all the arising risks can be solved by the enterprises without government intervention. Solution strategies can be used by large enterprises and SMEs alike.

Icks, A.; Levering, B.; Maaß, F.; Werner, A. (2015): Chancen und Risiken von CSR im Mittelstand, IfM Bonn: IfM-Materialien Nr. 236, Bonn.

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