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Corporate Social Responsibility across the Atlantic: Reviews, Issues and Perspectives

Special issue call for papers from Society and Business Review

Boston, University of Massachusetts, May 22-24, 2019

Yoann Bazin & Linh Chi Vo (Ecole de Management de Normandie),
Atreya Chakraborty & Lucia Silva Gao (University of Massachusetts Boston)

On September 2018, California became the first state to require corporate boards of directors to
include women. “The bill, which applies to companies ‘whose principal executive offices’ are in
California, requires them to have at least one woman on their boards by the end of 2019”1.
Although heavily debated, this decision to regulate added a west coast US state to a mainly
European list of countries mandating quotas for women on boards that includes Norway (since
2003), Spain, Belgium, Finland, France and Italy (Terjessen & al., 2014). This shows how diverse
approaches to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) practices and policies can be across the
Atlantic, both inside the two continents and in comparison.

CSR has received significant scholarly attention in the past two decades. We now have a relatively
advanced understanding of major aspects of the phenomenon, including antecedents and
consequences of CSR engagement by companies (Yang & Rivers, 2009), CSR structures and
strategies (McWilliams & al., 2006), or the dynamics of intra-organizational implementation of
CSR (Lindgreen & al., 2009 ; Thauer, 2014).

However, there remains a dearth of research on how these aspects vary within and between
countries and continents. Indeed, “comparative research in CSR between Europe and the United
State has identified remarkable differences between companies on each side of the Atlantic”
(Matten & Moon, 2008: 404). The political, legal, and business systems underlying CSR activities
in the US and Europe can differ significantly (Kolk, 2008; Doh and Guay, 2006; Aguilera et al.,
2006), leading to a diverse and rich landscape that still calls for further studies.

We welcome papers from a wide range of epistemological, conceptual and methodological
backgrounds. We invite submissions that address, but are not restricted to, the following issues:

  • Comparison of CSR practices, strategies and policies in the US and Europe
  • The intra-and-inter organizational factors influencing CSR activities and how they differ across countries
  • The lived experience of actors in charge of CSR implementation within the organization and how they live differently in the US and Europe
  • Differential impact on financial performance of CSR activities in the US and Europe
  • Differences in mandated and/or voluntary sustainability disclosure across countries.
  • The relationship of CSR and corporate governance in the US and Europe
  • The relationship of carbon trading and prices to CSR in US and European markets
  • The role of Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) practices and impact on CSR outcomes in the US and Europe
  • And in line with the EM Normandie research axis “Logistics Land Sea Risk”: Differences between CSR policies and practices in the maritime industry across the US and Europe.

Format and deadlines
Submissions should be short papers (3-5,000 words) outlining the research question, conceptual
background, methods and elements of results of the empirical study if it has been conducted (partly
or completely). Full papers will be considered as well.

Papers should be submitted to [email protected] by March 3, 2019. Decision and
feedbacks will be communicated by March 15, 2019. For more information about the conference:

Associated special issue
The best papers will be submitted for consideration to a special issue in the Society & Business
that will be published in 2020. A separate call for papers will be issued shortly.

1. Matt Stevens, California’s Publicly Held Corporations Will Have to Include Women on Their Boards. The New
York Times (Sept. 30, 2018).

Aguilera, Williams, Conley & Rupp (2006). Corporate governance and social responsibility: A
comparative analysis of the UK and the US. Corporate Governance, 14 (3)..
Doh, & Guay (2006) Corporate social responsibility, public policy, and NGO activism in
Europe and the United States. Journal of Management Studies, 43(1), pp.47-73.
Kolk (2008) Sustainability, accountability and corporate governance: exploring multinationals'
reporting practices. Business Strategy and the Environment, 17(1), pp.1-15.
Lindgreen, A., Swaen, V., & Maon, F. (2009). Introduction: Corporate social responsibility
implementation. Journal of Business Ethics, 85(2), 251-256.
Matten & Moon (2008). “Implicit” and “explicit” CSR: A conceptual framework for a
comparative understanding of CSR. Academy of Management Review, 33(2), 404-424.
McWilliams, A., Siegel, D. S., & Wright, P. M. (2006). Corporate social responsibility: Strategic
implications. Journal of Management Studies, 43(1), 1-18.
Terjesen, Aguilera & Lorenz (2015). Legislating a woman’s seat on the board. Journal of
Business Ethics
, 128(2).
Thauer, C. R. (2014). Goodness comes from within: Intra-organizational dynamics of corporate
social responsibility. Business & Society, 53(4), 483-516.
Yang & Rivers (2009). Antecedents of CSR practices in MNCs’ subsidiaries: A stakeholder and
institutional perspective. Journal of Business Ethics, 86(2), 155-169.