Submission Title

The New Role of Corporate Social Responsibility in the Digital Age

Location

Jereld R. Nicholson Library: Grand Avenue

Subject Area

Political Science

Description

In 2018, Nike, Inc. and Colin Kaepernick released the ad “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.” Within hours, the ad went viral, angering some while drawing praise from many others. This act marked an inflection point in the conventional wisdom of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Historically, firms steered away from engaging in highly controversial political issues. However, today, as political leadership declines and polarization plagues the government, corporations must change how they behave. Three influencing factors to this new corporate behavior are: 1) the increased value and fragility of a firm's reputation, 2) the increased availability of information at lightning speeds, and 3) consumers now expect corporations to engage in political issues at a much greater rate than traditionally expected by consumers. Using these influences, a new CSR definition will emerge, creating an updated lens that fits corporate behavior in the digital age, where more knowledgeable consumers require political action from major corporations.

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May 17th, 1:00 PM May 17th, 2:30 PM

The New Role of Corporate Social Responsibility in the Digital Age

Jereld R. Nicholson Library: Grand Avenue

In 2018, Nike, Inc. and Colin Kaepernick released the ad “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.” Within hours, the ad went viral, angering some while drawing praise from many others. This act marked an inflection point in the conventional wisdom of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Historically, firms steered away from engaging in highly controversial political issues. However, today, as political leadership declines and polarization plagues the government, corporations must change how they behave. Three influencing factors to this new corporate behavior are: 1) the increased value and fragility of a firm's reputation, 2) the increased availability of information at lightning speeds, and 3) consumers now expect corporations to engage in political issues at a much greater rate than traditionally expected by consumers. Using these influences, a new CSR definition will emerge, creating an updated lens that fits corporate behavior in the digital age, where more knowledgeable consumers require political action from major corporations.