Gathering storm: A continual learning approach to corporate social responsibility in the small to medium enterprise context
This paper undertakes a literature review of corporate social responsibility (CSR) with the emphasis on the potential for continual learning in the small to medium enterprise (SME) context. An extensive review of CSR, sustainability and SME literature has been conducted. Building on existing research, this paper takes a novel approach to argue for effective learning of CSR actions and behaviours through a continual and ongoing adoption. This is supported by theoretical concepts that are capable of adapting to the SME environment. Accentuating the fertile ground for further research, this literature review investigates the benefits of continual and collaborative learning of CSR practices in the SME context. It is anticipated that the argued approach will have broad applicability to provide SMEs the flexibility required for the challenges and barriers in taking a broader view of success. Several contributions are made in this paper. The theoretical component of taking a cyclical learning approach (Plan-Do-Study-Act) offers an adaptable framework for the implementation of CSR. This unique approach encourages the SME to take simple and doable steps in moving toward a multiple bottom line perspective. The minimal research exploring the learning and adoption of CSR actions and behaviours in the SME sector are highlighted to expose a rich area for further study.
4th Global Conference on SME, Entrepreneurship and Service Innovation (GCSMES) 2012
Business and Management not elsewhere classified