This study examines the communication imperative for corporate social responsibility (CSR). Based on in-depth interviews with CSR managers in large domestic and global corporations in India, the study furthers scholarly efforts to situate communication as central to the enactment of socially responsible behavior. The article begins by explicating the three prominent approaches —instrumental, relational, and constitutive— advanced in CSR scholarship, as a basis for understanding how CSR managers construct or articulate the case for communication in CSR. Participant discourses suggest an important and multi-dimensional role for communication, emphasize the need for subtlety and balance in communicating CSR, and point to the role of the media as a potential (dis)enabler for “getting the word out.” The study also reflects on the intersections and departures between scholarship and practice of CSR communication.

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International Journal of Business Communication
Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication (ESHCC)

Chaudhri, V. (2014). Corporate social responsibility and the communication imperative: perspectives from CSR managers. International Journal of Business Communication, 53(4), 419–442. doi:10.1177/2329488414525469