Aline Gatignon, The Wharton School Drivers of Firm Response to CSR Regulation

Principal Investigator

Aline Gatignon
Management, The Wharton School

Project Abstract

This project focuses on different aspects of companies’ CSR strategies in India, using data collected following the 2013 India CSR law. One key focus will be on firm characteristics such as the distinction between foreign and local firms, and another will be at the individual level, looking at the composition of firms’ CSR Boards. In the first focus area, for example, we will determine whether foreign and local firms adopt different approaches to CSR implementation and to what affect. Specifically, we will examine whether foreign and local firms differ in the variety of CSR initiatives  they undertake and the extent to which they partner with nonprofit organizations for project implementation, and how these two characteristics  affects the socio-economic development of their programs’ target beneficiaries. We anticipate that this should yield valuable insights as to how local versus multinational companies navigate the institutional environment and contribute to socio-economic development. We will also focus on the internal organization of CSR boards, by seeking to determine what are the most effective ways of structuring these boards to enhance the performance benefits of CSR projects for the firm. We will examine how three board characteristics (the mix of hierarchical representation within the board, functional areas and involvement of external board members) affect different aspects of CSR programs (meeting program milestones, program variety and nonprofit partnerships for implementation) and how these in turn affect firm performance in India.