CSR Identity - A Social Network Perspective

Research output: ThesisMaster's thesis


There has been rampant research on the topics of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Organizational Identity (OI) but relatively little work done in combining both to understand how CSR affects an organization‟s members, particularly, their identification with OI. We follow a few studies that looked at a CSR Identity from a constructionist perspective which regards identity as a product of an inter-subjective process of reality construction (e.g. Humphreys & Brown, 2008; Lauring & Thomsen, 2009); but where our study differs is in taking a social network analytic approach as an initial attempt to theoretically and empirically explore the concept of a CSR Identity from a social influence standpoint (e.g. Salancik & Pfeffer, 1978). We develop and test a 2-component model of identification which consists of CSR Identity Perceptions & CSR Valuations as precursors to identification with a CSR Identity. Our analysis was two-fold where we (1) explored the link between CSR Identity Perceptions, Valuations, & Identification, and (2) used network analysis to test for social influence on organizational members‟ CSR Identity Perceptions & CSR Valuations. We adjusted the initial model based on our findings and some post hoc work indicating CSR Valuation to act as a mediator between CSR Identity Perceptions & Identification. Further, our results suggested that social influence acts on Identification through its precursors Identity Perceptions & Valuations, thus supporting a constructionist view of identity. Social influence was shown to operate mainly through group closure and informal centrality (power) on CSR Identity Perceptions & Valuations, and through brokerage on CSR Valuation. We conclude the paper with some interpretation of findings and a discussion of applications and limitations.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationMaster of Science
Awarding Institution
  • Concordia University
  • Lamertz, Kai, Supervisor, External person
Award date01.08.2011
Publication statusPublished - 01.09.2011
MoE publication typeG2 Master's thesis, polytechnic Master's thesis


  • 515 Psychology
  • social influence
  • social identity
  • social network analysis
  • 512 Business and Management
  • Social responsibility
  • Organizational identity
  • employee attitudes
  • engagement
  • Management strategy


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