1st Edition

The Routledge Handbook of Corporate Social Responsibility Communication

Edited By Amy O’Connor Copyright 2023
    388 Pages 13 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    388 Pages 13 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Winner of the National Communication Association’s Public Relations Division 2023 Outstanding Book Award

    This handbook is a resource for students, faculty, and researchers who are focused on understanding the role communication plays in the formation and execution of corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities.

    Bringing together authors who are thought-leaders and emerging scholars from diverse theoretical and methodological perspectives, it examines the issues central to CSR communication including: theoretical underpinnings, form and content of CSR messaging, the boundaries of engagement, and the tensions associated with CSR communication. It offers a unique combination of functional and formative approaches to CSR communication designed to expose readers to a blend of approaches. With attention to issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion, this handbook also explicitly addresses recent societal changes and how those changes will impact CSR communication research and practices in the future.

    Offering both a strong introduction to topics for novices as well as a more advanced interrogation of CSR communication for more knowledgeable readers, the handbook is appropriate for advanced students and researchers in public relations, strategic communication, organizational communication, and allied fields.


    CSR communication research – praxis and promise 

    Amy O’Connor

    Section I: Mapping the Field of CSR Communication

      1. CSR communication from a public relations perspective
      2. Sora Kim

      3. Organizational communication and Corporate Social Responsibility: Critical perspectives and reflections on the public good.
      4. Steve May

      5. CSR communication from a rhetorical and semiotic perspective
      6. Andrea Catellani and Øyvind Ihlen

      7. Communicating CSR across cultures: From a global and local to glocal challenges
      8. Parichart Sthapitanonda and Chanapa Itdhiamornkulchai

      9. Articulating the value of an institutional perspective in CSR communication research
      10. Amy O’Connor and John C. Lammers

      11. Constitutive views on CSR communication: The communicative constitution of responsible organization, organizing, and organizationality

        Dennis Schoeneborn, Sarah Glozer, and Hannah Trittin-Ulbrich

      12. Toward a multi-dimensional network model of CSR initiatives
      13. Aimei Yang and Adam Saffer

      14. A conversation about three key yet underexplored tensions in contemporary notions of CSR communication
      15. Cynthia Stohl and Mette Morsing

        Section II: Form and Content of CSR Communication

      16. CSR communication message effects
      17. Hyejoon Rim and Weiting Tao

      18. Visual strategies for CSR communication
      19. Sun Young Lee and Sungwon Chung

      20. CSR communication and the commodification of compassion
      21. Urša Golob and Nataša Verk

      22. CSR communication and social media
      23. Hao Xu

      24. CSR and crisis communication: Exploring the research on CSR crisis communication
      25. W. Timothy Coombs

      26. Corporate social advocacy
      27. Barbara Miller Gaither and Lucinda Austin

      28. A conversation about conceptual and methodological challenges in CSR communication research
      29. Amy O’Connor and Holly Overton 

        Section III: Exploring organizational influences on CSR communication

      30. CSR communication in stigmatized industries
      31. Tae Ho Lee

      32. Toward a relational CSR model: CSR communication of Global Fortune 100 during the COVID-19 Pandemic
      33. Nur Uysal

      34. Corporate social responsibility in small- and medium-sized fast-growth private firms: How it is conceived, enacted, and communicated
      35. Peggy Cunningham

      36. Overcoming the dark side of CSR communication and employee relations
      37. Ganga S. Dhanesh

      38. CSR communication and organizational leadership: How does CSR communication contribute to responsible organizational leadership?
      39. Anne Ellerup Nielsen and Christa Thomsen

      40. Organizational history and CSR communication
      41. Claudia Janssen Danyi

      42. A conversation about the communicative constitution of CSR and its implications for organizations and society
      43. François Cooren and Michelle Shumate

        Section IV: Exploring social and stakeholder influences on CSR communication

      44. CSR communication and legitimacy creation
      45. Holly Overton, Virginia Harrison, and Nicholas Eng

      46. Understanding CSR partnership communication from a portfolio approach
      47. Chuqing Dong and Yiqi Li

      48. The collaboration communication conundrum: NGOs as CSR actors, beneficiaries, and adversaries

        Jiawei Sophia Fu and Yoori Yang
      49. CSR in the community: Implications for communication, development, and engagement

        Vidhi Chaudhri and Asha Kaul
      50. Contesting the meaning and boundaries of "safety" as CSR in the mining industry
      51. Amy O’Connor

      52. Controversial Corporate social responsibility: The challenge ahead?
      53. Wim J.L. Elving

      54. A conversation about the future of CSR communication research

    Christen Buckley, Katie Haejung Kim, Nitzan Navick, and Bennet Schwoon


    Amy O’Connor is an associate professor in the Hubbard School of Journalism & Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities. Her research explores what CSR means to corporations and stakeholders, how institutional level pressure determines CSR, and how CSR influences stakeholder-organization relationships. Her research is published in diverse disciplinary journals: Business & Society, Management Communication Quarterly, and Public Relations Review.

    "An impressive collection of leading thinkers in the CSR space address important topics in this book, including corporate advocacy, CSR crisis, stakeholder engagement, and transparency among a broad range of organization types. This volume is a 'must-have' reference for any scholar or student of CSR."

    Denise Sevick Bortree, Director of the Arthur W. Page Center, The Pennsylvania State University, USA

    "This is a wonderful compendium of research on CSR communication featuring the world’s leading scholars in the field along with some of the best new voices emerging across the globe. If you only read one book on CSR this year, make it this one."

    Andrew Crane, Director of the Centre for Business, Organisations and Society, University of Bath, UK

    "This Handbook brings together leading CSR communication scholars to offer a diverse range of perspectives and topical emphases that will guide and inspire research. The Handbook not only captures existing literature; it pushes past the boundaries of existing CSR scholarship to set an exciting agenda for the future."

    Joshua B. Barbour, University of Texas at Austin, USA