Beyond lobbying: the political determinants of adopting corporate social responsibility frameworks in the European Union and the USA

Bernhagen, P., Kollman, K. and Patsiurko, N. (2022) Beyond lobbying: the political determinants of adopting corporate social responsibility frameworks in the European Union and the USA. Interest Groups and Advocacy, 11(3), pp. 373-398. (doi: 10.1057/s41309-022-00155-2)

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This paper explores the role of corporate social responsibility (CSR) as an element in a corporation’s political action repertoire. Previous research has studied lobbying and CSR as a distinct means by which corporations seek to manage their non-market environment. Analyzing CSR as a political activity, we argue that corporations engage in CSR for the same reasons that prompt them to engage in lobbying. More specifically, we expect corporations to adopt CSR frameworks that are suitable to enhance their reputation in a given political arena. To evaluate this argument, we analyze the lobbying and CSR behavior in the EU and USA of over 2000 corporations from around the world. Our results show that lobbying and adopting CSR frameworks can be predicted by similar empirical models. Moreover, controlling for common predictors and endogeneity, lobbying in the EU is associated with an increased likelihood of a corporation adopting an appropriate CSR framework. However, corporations that lobby in Washington DC become less likely to engage in CSR the more they spend on lobbying. These findings shed new light on the relationship between lobbying and CSR while highlighting important differences in corporate non-market behavior across political arenas.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Kollman, Professor Kelly
Authors: Bernhagen, P., Kollman, K., and Patsiurko, N.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Politics
Journal Name:Interest Groups and Advocacy
Publisher:Palgrave Macmillan
ISSN (Online):2047-7422
Published Online:02 March 2022
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2022 The Authors
First Published:First published in Interest Groups and Advocacy 11(3): 373-398
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
167459Borderless Politics: Corporate Lobbying in Multiple ArenasKelly KollmanEconomic and Social Research Council (ESRC)ES/I036974/1S&PS - Politics