The Evolution of Corporate Citizenship: Value Enhancement through Fostering Social Capital and Cohesion
Orientation towards the common good
Concept & measurement
Turbulent times highlight inequalities and inefficiencies that have the potential to further undermine socio-economic stability. This research uses the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic to examine the connection between social cohesion and Corporate Social Responsibility to build a theory that bridges the two concepts through the vehicle of Corporate Volunteering. The study investigates what effects the pandemic has had on Corporate Volunteering in a comparative analysis between two international firms with a significant presence in Germany while examining a potential correlation between the level of strategic CSR and the ability of a firm’s Corporate Volunteering program to produce strong bridging social ties. As such, this research uses Porter and Kramers’ Shared Value Framework (2006) as a basis for the paradigm of strategic CSR while drawing relevant elements from Stakeholder Theory, Corporate Social Responsiveness, and Social Capital Theory to fill some conceptual gaps in operationalizing firm and societal value creation. The interaction with diverse beneficiaries and stakeholders demonstrates business and social value are derived from many of the volunteering programs and activities. The affective link between the firm and its beneficiaries built through social capital generation in Corporate Volunteering programs also has an influence on CSR commitment reducing retrenchment in times of crisis.