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Some definitions

Key definitions of social responsibility

 

The concept of social responsibility has no single, universally accepted definition. Various definitions and models have been formulated, including the following:

 


Green Paper – Promoting a European Framework for Corporate Social Responsibility

According to the European Commission document Green Paper – Promoting a European Framework for Corporate Social Responsibility (2001), “most definitions of corporate social responsibility describe it as a concept whereby companies integrate social and environmental concerns in their business operations and in their interaction with their stakeholders on a voluntary basis.”

 

Expert Forum on CSR of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs

In 2005 the Expert Forum on CSR of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs offered the following definition: “Beyond strict compliance with regulatory obligations, corporate social responsibility involves companies voluntarily addressing concerns related to social, employment and environmental issues and respect for human rights that arise in the context of their relationships and transparent dialogue with stakeholders by integrating these concerns in their governance and management, strategy, policies and procedures. CSR thus involves companies taking responsibility for the consequences and impacts of their actions.”

 

Government of Catalonia

The Government of Catalonia defines business social responsibility as follows: “the voluntary integration of social and environmental concerns in business operations and relationships with stakeholders: customers, suppliers, employees, shareholders, etc. Beyond full compliance with regulatory obligations, socially responsible companies also invest in human capital and in their relationships with the environment and with society.”

 

ISO 26000 guide

In the ISO 26000 guidelines on social responsibility established by the International Organisation for Standardisation, SR is defined as follows: “the responsibility of an organisation for the impacts of its decisions and activities on society and the environment, through transparent and ethical behaviour that:

- contributes to sustainable development, including health and the welfare of society;

- takes into account the expectations of stakeholders;

- is in compliance with applicable law and consistent with international norms of behaviour;

- is integrated throughout the organisation and practiced in its relationships.”