Economics & Sociology

ISSN: 2071-789X eISSN: 2306-3459 DOI: 10.14254/2071-789X
Index PUBMS: f5512f57-a601-11e7-8f0e-080027f4daa0
Article information
Title: CSR-related competitiveness and legitimacy in MSMEs
Issue: Vol. 13, No 1, 2020
Published date: 03-2020 (print) / 03-2020 (online)
Journal: Economics & Sociology
ISSN: 2071-789X, eISSN: 2306-3459
Authors: Dolores Gallardo-Vázquez
Department of Financial Economy and Accounting, Faculty of Economics and Business Studies, University of Extremadura, Av Elvas s/n 06006 Badajoz, Spain

José Luis Lizcano-Álvarez
Spanish Association of Accounting and Business Administration, C/ Rafael Bergamín 16 B, 28043 Madrid, Spain
Keywords: corporate social responsibility, micro, small, and medium enterprises, legitimacy, competitiveness
DOI: 10.14254/2071-789X.2020/13-1/4
Index PUBMS: 60c38ab2-78bf-11ea-a0f3-fa163e0fa1a0
Language: English
Pages: 52-73 (22)
JEL classification: M14, M19, Q56
The authors would like to express their gratitude for the European Regional Development Fund and the Junta of Extremadura's financial support and, more specifically, the funds provided by the Business Research (INVE) Research Group (SEJ022 code) and by the VI Action Plan 2018–2020 (GR18058). At the same time, this study would not be possible without the generous collaboration of the Spanish Association of Accounting and Business Administration.

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has emerged as an important strategy in business contexts. This study’s main objective was to identify and characterize the basic elements of CSR in micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) that can contribute to improving these companies’ competitiveness and legitimacy. The research was based on the premises defining CSR’s scope laid out by the Spanish Association of Accounting and Business Administration and the conceptual framework for corporate responsibility proposed by the European Commission’s Directorate-General Enterprise and Industry. A 2004 compilation of good practices in small and medium-sized enterprises in Europe provided the foundation for a systematic analysis isolating elements common to the two cited organizations’ frameworks. This is a descriptive study, on a sample of 23 companies belonging to the Autonomous Community of Extremadura, in Spain, involved in the practice of CSR and very sensitized to implement this strategy. Based on this list of features, a theoretical framework of CSR was constructed in order to identify the most significant elements and distinguish those of greatest importance to MSMEs’ competitiveness and legitimacy. The originality of this study combined public and private CSR frameworks to categorize the distinctive elements of CSR in MSMEs.


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