Approaching Corporate Social Responsibility Trough Cross Sector Social Partnerships - Case Study of Bufab Romania

Article excerpt

Abstract. In this article we address issues related to cross sector social partnerships as a form of a complex corporate social responsibility policy of companies developed with the purpose of creating social value and economic value. We also highlight the implications of corporate social responsibilities and partnerships and their effects over the entities implicated to follow the same avenue to reach different objectives. Nowadays, more and more not for profit organizations are increasingly thinking their strategy, resources and competencies in business terms which make the partnership with public sector for social purposes easier. Collaborations/ partnerships could be considered an important stimulus for successful corporate social responsibility strategies, and it can enhance significantly innovation and organizational effectiveness. Due to this research, there will be exemplified through a case study how a business can collaborate efficiently with a not for profit organization, by addressing issues that complements the subject studied, identifying ultimately how social involvement of these corporations can provide longterm and sustainable social value.

Keywords: corporate social responsibility, cooperation, strategy, social impact, social value.

1. Introduction

Corporate social responsibility refers to the responsibilities of corporations as social institutions (Dillard and Murray, 2013). According to Bateson (1979) it refers to elements such as: sustainability, environmental management, sustainable development, philanthropy and community investments, corporate governance, worker rights and welfare, human rights, corruption, legal compliance and animal rights. The Brundtland Commission (World Commission of Economic Development, 2004) considers that social responsibility emphasizes those actions that meet the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. The term corporate responsibility describes the philanthropic activities that a company can achieve (Blowfield and Murray, 2008). Corporate social responsibility involves a commitment to improve society through business practices (Kotler and Lee, 2005).

An organization must be actively involved in the development of society. In order to do that, a company has a plethora of instruments that can be used to reduce the distance between the company and the environment. Thus social responsibility is an alternative that refers to the actions, an organization takes beyond what is legally required to protect or enhance the well-being of living things (Carroll and Buchholtz, 2011). The central contribution of corporate social responsibility is to place social needs on top of the agenda of the business, by facing the dilemma of choosing between social needs and economic objectives (Seitanidi, 2013).

Corporate social responsibility includes those practices that enable positive relationships with the communities (Waddock, 2004). Thus, we may include under this umbrella philanthropic foundations and business programs, volunteering, donations under different forms, intersectional collaboration, etc. A similar approach argues that corporate social involvement requires investment in partnerships established with non-profit and public sector in order to create favorable and healthy conditions, targeting both the community's needs and the business objectives of the company (Austin, 2000).

To increase the impact of corporate social responsibility policies, enterprises should identify the community operating partners (businesses, social mission organizations) who have experience in dealing with the social problems of the community, like not for profit organizations (Crisan and Borza, 2010). Thus, considering the diversity and particular characteristics of each organization, the main challenge is to find the proper partner with which it is possible to achieve synergy. This requires more advanced and powerful forms of corporate social responsibility, called by Austin and Refico (2009) corporate social entrepreneurship (CSE). …