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Business Ethics: Corporate Social Responsibility

This LibGuide is an introduction to business ethics and corporate social responsibility. Included in this guide are highlighted books, articles, databases, encyclopedias, films, and websites to help get your research started.

What is Corporate Social Responsibility?

Corporate Social Responsibility, sometimes abbreviated at CSR, refers to a business practice that involves participating in initiatives that benefit society.  

Corporate Social Responsibility can encompass a wide variety of tactics, from giving non-profit organizations a portion of a company's proceeds, to giving away a product or service to a worthy recipient for every sale made. Here are three kinds of Corporate Social Responsibility: 

Environment: One primary focus of Corporate Social Responsibility is the environment. Businesses, both large and small, have a large carbon footprint. Any steps they can take to reduce those footprints are considered both good for the company and society as a whole. 

Philanthropy: Businesses also practice social responsibility by donating to national and local charities. Whether it involves giving money or time, businesses have a lot of resources that can benefit charities and local community programs. 

Ethical Labor Practices: By treating employees fairly and ethically, companies can also demonstrate their Corporate Social Responsibility. This is especially true of businesses that operate in international locations with labor laws that differ from those in the United States.

For more information about Corporate Social Responsibility, read this article: What is Corporate Social Responsibility?

Corporate Social Responsibility in Action

Here are some examples of companies who have successfully put Corporate Social Responsibility practices into action: 


Environmental Corporate Social Responsibility


Philanthropic Corporate Social Responsibility:


Ethical Labor Corporate Social Responsibility