Sunday, November 16, 2008

Corporate Social Responsibility in Question

Oh! This is my inagural post -- I'm SO EXCITED!! I am a total novice to the blogging world, but what better forum to discuss what we each see in our day to day lives regarding the study that we love -- Philanthropy.

Although from an issue in the Chronicle a month ago, the effect of Corporate Social Responsibility has peaked my interest. This article appeared around the same time that Target started running it's new (and super cute) commercial ad, touting the fact that 5% of every purchase goes towards Target's mission of community awareness and their community outreach program. They give money to education, arts and culture, and social services in the community, donating roughly $3 million a week. CSR is an admirable way for companies to funnel some of their profits back into the community that supports them.

However, the October article in the Chronicle of Philanthropy cited a Forbes article which asks, does CSR really pay off? Does knowledge of Target's 'giving back' really incline consumers to shop there instead of WalMart? Hass claims that convenience, price, and quality rather than ethical reasons motivate consumers to buy certain products, or in this case, shop at a certain store.

After an in-depth and elaborate consumer poll (consisting of Laura, my mom, and I...HEY! We are born shoppers), I concluded that it does indeed make a difference.

But perhaps we are predisposed. I mean, I AM blogging for the first time in my life on the issue of philanthropy.

1 comment:

SKN said...

WOOH! I'm kinda addicted to blogging, so I hope it catches on for you too, MBK! :)

Anyway, this is a very interesting on-going debate, as you know. And there's more and more media attention on the issue as well. Back in September (see I commented on Target's 5% Philanthropist campaign too ... and while I'm not about to stop shopping there, I really think their ads inspire me to be a consumer rather than a philanthropist ... and, well, I have a hard time compromising those two things as they seem so contradictory to me. I'm interested to know how others differentiate the two.

Happy shopping/giving! :)