Corporate Social Responsibility and Natural Resource Conflict

Kylie McKenna

    Research output: Book/ReportBook


    This book proposes a new model of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), reconceptualised as 'Interdependent Engagement' - a model which transforms existing approaches to CSR to engage with key sources of resource conflict. At least forty per cent of internal conflicts globally are related to natural resources and the business community's preferred method for avoiding their implication in this figure is CSR. This book asks why it is that previous CSR practices have not always achieved their aims. Further, it explains how and why current CSR initiatives of major natural resource companies may be unable to assist corporations avoid social conflict. The study concludes that this limitation is attributable to the failure of current models of CSR to respond to the social and environmental issues of most concern to local host communities. The argument is made that CSR could assist corporations to promote peace building if it were re-designed in such a way as to engage with the interdependencies between business activity and the root causes of conflict. The book is based on 86 interviews conducted across nine countries ranging from corporate executives to indigenous landowners, presenting the argument for a reconsideration of CSR that more affectively strikes a balance between corporate self-interest and community expectations in the pursuit of a peaceful and sustainable extractive project. The book identifies four important limitations of dominant models of CSR discourse that have constrained the case study companies' ability to engage with these interdependencies. These are: the emphasis on pledges over institutional change, responsiveness to host states to the exclusion of local communities, failure to incorporate alternative visions of justice into the design of voluntary social and environmental initiatives, and the implementation of one-size-fits-all solutions to complex social and environmental problems. The book should be of interest to students and scholars in the fields of CSR, politics and international relations, natural resources, environmental, development, peace and conflict studies.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationUnited States of America
    PublisherRoutledge Taylor & Francis Group
    ISBN (Print)9781138783287
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


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