increasingly sophisticated way; moving from quality assurance, to business excellence and then socially responsible business.215
5.2 Strategy dimensions of CSR
As earlier mentioned, the research on CSR and strategy includes how CSR is related to corporate strategy as well as conceptualizations into different CSR strategies. Corporate strategy can be defined as the overall plan for a diversified company and concerns what businesses the corporation should be in and how the corporate office should manage the array of business units.216 The research on CSR strategy and its connection to corporate strategy is rather limited; as supported by Dentchev and Galbreath.217 Furthermore, we found that much of the CSR strategy research ties to the concept of strategy in its broadest sense. Examples of this include Smith218 who writes that the development of the right research strategy requires an understanding of what differentiates an organization and should be unique from that of even its closest competitors. On the other hand, Epstein & Roy219conclude that sustainability strategy should be tied to corporate and business unit strategy and should be evaluated through key performance indicators (KPIs) and by understanding the effects of corporate activities on stakeholders. This research is very general and vague in nature and does not provide us with a framework to analyze IKEA’s CSR strategy or the link of CSR to corporate strategy. This part will include theory to answer the “how” part of our research question on why IKEA engages in CSR. The most relevant theories for our research on CSR strategy relate to the integration between business and society, the value adding dimensions of CSR, the strategic options and lastly Carroll's four categories of responsibilities in relation to the strategic options.220 Although this last framework is not directly related to strategy, it demonstrates what responsibilities a CSR strategy should address.
5.2.1 Corporate social agenda: Strategic and responsive CSR Porter & Kramer221 state that there are two forms of CSR: strategic and responsive. The aim of a
company should be to focus resources and attention to strategic CSR as this enables the company to make the most significant social impact and achieve the greatest business benefits. Strategic CSR implies outside-in and inside-out linkages working together. Inside-out linkages constitute the way a company impinges upon society through its operations in the normal course of business whilst outside-in linkages are the way external social conditions influence corporations for better or worse.222
The focus of CSR should be on the points of intersection between business and society rather than the friction between them. Companies cannot take on all of society's problems, but rather must choose which social issues to address. Porter & Kramer’s framework223 divides social issues into three different categories: generic social issues, value chain and social impacts, and social dimensions of competitive context. The categorizing and ranking of these social issues constitute a company’s corporate social agenda and should serve to reinforce corporate strategy. Generic social issues are important to society, but are neither significantly affected by the company’s operations nor influence the company’s long-term competitiveness. They can therefore be regarded as responsive CSR. Value chain social impacts are social issues that are significantly affected by the company's activities in the ordinary course of business and can be divided into responsive CSR when focus lies on only
215 216 217 218 219 220 221 222 223
Hazlett, S. et al (2007). Porter, M. (1985). Dentchev, N. (2005), Galbreath, J. ( 2006). Smith, N. C. (2003). Epstein, M. & Roy, M. (2001). Burke, L. & Logsdon, J. (1996), Porter, M. & Kramer, M. (2006), Galbreath, J. ( 2006), Carroll, A. (1991). Porter, M. & Kramer, M. (2006). Porter, M. & Kramer, M. (2006). Porter, M. & Kramer, M. (2006).