Kotler and Levy, in their book, CorporateSocial Responsibility define corporate social responsibility as "a commitment to improve communitywell-being through discretionary business practices and contributions ofcorporate resources".  Some of the benefits of being sociallyresponsible include (a) enhanced company and brand image (b) easier to attractand retain employees (c) increased market share (d) lower operating costs and(e) easier to attract investors.

A socially responsible firm will careabout customers, employees, suppliers, the local community, society, and theenvironment. CSR can be described as an approach by which a company (a)recognizes that its activities have a wide impact on the society and thatdevelopment in society in turn supports the company to pursue its businesssuccessfully and (b) actively manages the economic, social, environmental andhuman rights.

This approach is derived from theprinciples of sustainable development and good corporate governance. Marketingmanagers within different firms will see some social issues as more relevantthan others. The relevance of a given social issue is determined by thecompany's products, promotional efforts, and pricing and distribution policiesbut also by its philosophy of social responsibility.

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The author is Lecturer in Commerce, Sri Sarada College for Women (Autonomous), Salem.


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