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Document Abstract
Published: 2008

Priorities for corporate social responsibility: a survey of businesses and their stakeholders

Defining the CSR priorities of businesses and stakeholders in Hong Kong
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In order to define what corporate social responsibility (CSR) means to a company, it needs to engage with its stakeholders and take into account their needs and aspirations when designing CSR strategies and programmes.This report identifies the CSR priorities of both businesses and their stakeholders in Hong Kong, to establish what they think are the most important factors in determining what is socially responsible.

The report collected data from businesses and seven stakeholder groups, relating to the importance they attributed to fifteen factors associated with CSR. The results indicate that although the nature of different stakeholder groups is not the same, they seem to have similar concerns relating to priorities for CSR in Hong Kong:
  • good environmental performance ranked first among the fifteen factors while good health and safety and corporate governance ranked second and third, respectively
  • philanthropy ranked last among the fifteen factors
  • environmental NGOs rank good environmental performance and social and environmental policies as the most important two factors; they are also keen to see more stakeholder dialogue and good health and safety
  • social NGOs tend to prioritise human resource and labour issues rather more - this may reflect the fact that a number of the responses in this sector came from a range of labour organisations, and in that regard, human rights are ranked as a higher priority than any other stakeholder group
  • both NGO groups see stakeholder dialogue and supply chain management and factory inspections as important
  • investors rank governance and codes of conduct on bribery and corruption as their most important elements, and also put emphasis on company reports
  • an analysis of the mean scores reveals that investors gave negative ratings to human rights and philanthropy demonstrating that these two issues were seen on average as having very little importance
The report concludes that for Hong Kong the traditional areas of CSR, including environmental performance, health and safety, good governance and human resource management and employment practices still dominate the concerns of both business and their stakeholders. It should also be noted however that other factors are seen as important and that companies are going to be expected to address all of them if they are to be seen as leaders with respect to CSR.
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R. Welford; C. Chan; M. Man

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