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Corporate social responsibility (CSR), also known as corporate responsibility,

corporate citizenship, responsible business, sustainable responsible


business (SRB), or corporate social performance
Corporate social responsibility is represented by the contributions undertaken by companies
to society through its core business activities, its social investment and philanthropy
programmes and its engagement in public policy

BENEFITS

1. CSR helps in building long-term value. It improves co.s reputation and


encourage customers and other stakeholders to stay involved with it.

2. A good reputation makes it easier to recruit employees.


3. Employees may stay longer, reducing the costs and disruption of recruitment and
retraining.
4. Employees are better motivated and more productive.
5. CSR helps ensure you comply with regulatory requirements.
6. Activities such as involvement with the local community are ideal opportunities to
generate positive press coverage.
7. Good relationships with local authorities make doing business easier. See the page in this
guide on how to work with the local community.
8. Understanding the wider impact of your business can help you develop new products
and services.
9. CSR can make you more competitive and reduces the risk of sudden damage to your
reputation (and sales). Investors recognise this and are more willing to finance you.

Corporate governance
Corporate governance is the set of processes, customs, policies, laws, and
institutions affecting the way a corporation (or company) is directed, administered
or controlled. Corporate governance also includes the relationships among the
many stakeholders involved and the goals for which the corporation is governed.
The principal stakeholders are the shareholders/members, management, and the
board of directors. Other stakeholders include labor (employees), customers,
creditors (e.g., banks, bond holders), suppliers, regulators, and the community at
large.

Parties to corporate governance


Parties involved in corporate governance include the regulatory body (e.g. the Chief
Executive Officer, the board of directors, management,shareholders and Auditors).
Other stakeholders who take part include suppliers, employees, creditors,
customers and the community at large.
All parties to corporate governance have an interest, whether direct or indirect, in
the effective performance of the organisation. Directors, workers and management
receive salaries, benefits and reputation, while shareholders receive capital return.
Customers receive goods and services; suppliers receive compensation for their
goods or services. In return these individuals provide value in the form of natural,
human, social and other forms of capital.

Principles

Commonly accepted principles of corporate governance include:

• Rights and equitable treatment of shareholders: Organizations should respect the


rights of shareholders and help shareholders to exercise those rights. They can help
shareholders exercise their rights by effectively communicating information that is
understandable and accessible and encouraging shareholders to participate in general
meetings.
• Interests of other stakeholders: Organizations should recognize that they have legal and
other obligations to all legitimate stakeholders.
• Role and responsibilities of the board: The board needs a range of skills and
understanding to be able to deal with various business issues and have the ability to
review and challenge management performance. It needs to be of sufficient size and have
an appropriate level of commitment to fulfill its responsibilities and duties. There are
issues about the appropriate mix of executive and non-executive directors.
• Integrity and ethical behaviour: Ethical and responsible decision making is not only
important for public relations, but it is also a necessary element in risk management and
avoiding lawsuits. Organizations should develop a code of conduct for their directors and
executives that promotes ethical and responsible decision making. It is important to
understand, though, that reliance by a company on the integrity and ethics of individuals
is bound to eventual failure. Because of this, many organizations establish Compliance
and Ethics Programs to minimize the risk that the firm steps outside of ethical and legal
boundaries.
• Disclosure and transparency: Organizations should clarify and make publicly known
the roles and responsibilities of board and management to provide shareholders with a
level of accountability. They should also implement procedures to independently verify
and safeguard the integrity of the company's financial reporting. Disclosure of material
matters concerning the organization should be timely and balanced to ensure that all
investors have access to clear, factual information.

Case Studies
The case studies below demonstrate how diverse company activities can be for businesses
of all sizes.
SAP
Here for Life is a not-for-profit public benevolent organisation focusing on education,
awareness and research aimed at the prevention of youth suicide. The organization provides
resources, education and school based life skills programs to help prevent suicide amongst
young people. Through its charity sponsorship program SAP Australia supports Here for Life
with monetary contributions, volunteering and staff involvement in the agency's programs
Sun Microsystems
In 1998, Sun became Musica Viva's first and only principal sponsor. By associating itself
with a leader in the IT industry, Musica Viva gains networking opportunities within the
corporate sector, resulting in further sponsorship openings. It gains access to Sun's staff and
customer base to increase awareness of Musica Viva's activities and performances, enabling
it to achieve its own aims of taking the beauty of music into the lives of ordinary Australians
and forging meaningful links between the arts and the corporate world. The exchange of
expertise helps both partners. Sun provides its technological know-how and assists with
market reach for Musica Viva, which in turn provides opportunities to give something back to
Australia's cultural life through supporting and engaging with music in various ways.
IBM
IBM - Japan’s ‘e-elder’ initiative is a national program using training materials and other
support from IBM Japan which will hire and train seniors as instructors for other seniors in an
effort to help elder citizens (expected to make up one-fifth of Japan’s population by 2008)
more fully participate in a Web-based society.
HP
In Singapore, HP staff raised nearly $295,000 for charity in 2003 and received a SHARE
Gold Award from the Community Chest of Singapore for employee participation exceeding
50%. One event was Gladiathon, a fundraiser in support of the President's Challenge 2003.
Leading by example was the Managing Director from HP Asia Pacific, who wore a gladiator
costume and competed with other IT industry leaders in the battle for charity. HP was the
largest corporate donor of this event, raising a total of $121,000.
Microsoft
Microsoft works closely with international organizations such as the World Food Programme,
Save the Children, and Mercy Corps to provide technology-based development assistance
through the HEART (Humanitarian Empowerment and Response through Technology)
program. More and more, global organizations rely on technology to improve the
effectiveness of their humanitarian efforts around the world.