Inderscience Publishers

Perceptions of corporate social responsibility in Australian forestry companies

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To date, limited research has been conducted investigating forest company employee views about corporate social responsibility (CSR). We interviewed 19 employees within two forest companies in Australia. Employees mostly understood CSR as an approach to business not purely focused on financial outcomes, but also addressing social and environmental objectives. Some employees also believed that CSR was an action required for community acceptance of forestry, although many believed CSR would not always be effective in improving acceptance of their company’s practices. Employees believed that not all negative perceptions of forestry practices could be addressed within the scope of their company’s CSR strategy. However, there are opportunities to improve current practice by: a) improving the ability to measure company social license to operate; b) enhancing relationships with a broader range of stakeholders; c) improving collaborations with other forest organisations to address industry social licence to operate issues.

Keywords: community engagement, corporate social responsibility, CSR, sustainable forest management, social license to operate, sustainability, Australia

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