Inderscience Publishers

Community relations management systems in the minerals industry: combining conventional and stakeholder-driven approaches

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As part of a broader commitment to corporate social responsibility and sustainable development, major minerals companies are developing and implementing a management systems approach to community relations. While the application of management systems to community relations represents an advance over more traditional approaches to dealing with community issues, limitations of the systems paradigm need to be acknowledged. This paper explores some of these limitations, as well as offering a way forward that involves incorporating elements of the conventional management systems model into a more externally focused, stakeholder-driven and values-based approach. Implementing the 'hybrid' approach presents minerals companies with significant challenges and will require them to make a substantial investment in organisational capacity building. Companies will also have to be prepared to re-visit how they engage with external stakeholders and to contemplate greater external involvement in planning and performance review processes.

Keywords: community relations management, corporate social responsibility, CSR, management systems, minerals industry, mining, policy, self regulation, stakeholder engagement, sustainable development, sustainability, planning, performance review

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