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Social Responsibility

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In general, social responsibility involves strict guidelines which determine moral and social obligations companies should follow. Today, there is a strong tendency is for societies to demand that companies act with increasing concern for the overall societal and environmental needs, as well as economic needs. According to Hurst (2004).responsibility refers to “fulfilling the responsibilities or obligations that a company has toward its stakeholders. When examining a particular corporate practice, like profit versus environmental protection, corporate responsibility can help distinguish between a stakeholder expectation and a corporate obligation” (Hurst, 2004). Social responsibility means that companies have broader obligations including specific responsibilities toward customers, employees, suppliers, and society as a whole.

For instance, stability of employment and work safety are more important than the level of profits. Many companies develop a code of ethical conduct which stipulates strict moral and ethical rules aimed to protect interest groups. The notion of corporate responsibility involves external areas (consumer and community relations) and internal areas (physical environment factors). The main task of social responsibility policies is to reduce any harmful influence on the natural environment and stakeholders. Corporate responsibility has a great impact on the overall being of a business determining moral and ethical standards applied to all areas of operations. Corporate responsibility creates a positive image of the company and ensures social stability and recognition.

The best example of a company with strict social policies is Chevron. In 2005, social responsibility covered eight the most important areas which “guide business success”: integration, stakeholder consultation, community engagement, human rights, HIV/AIDS, health and safety, environmental management, climate change, energy efficiency and renewables.

These areas of concern ensure effective communication of information to shareholders, open-dating and full description of goods which are advertised to high standards. Chevron considers social issues and environmental influences in making investment decisions. Employees, their work safety and health are the main priority. In 2005, Chevron improved working conditions and introduced health related programs for employee. Also, Chevron took actions to decrease GHG emissions and reduce negative impact of production on the environment (2005 Corporate Responsibility Report, 2006).


  1. Hurst, N.E. (2004) Corporate Ethics, Governance and Social Responsibility. Retrieved from www.scu.edu/ethics/publications/ submitted/hurst/comparitive_study.pdf (accessed 28 July 2006)
  2. 2005 Corporate Responsibility Report. (2006) http://www.chevron.com/cr_report/2005/

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