Drivers and constraints of Corporate Social Responsibility in Swedish construction organizations
Examensarbete för masterexamen
Design and construction project management (MPDCM), MSc
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a concept that has evolved in the last decades. It refers to the debate concerning businesses broader responsibility towards society other than return of investment. Historically in Sweden, private and public sectors have not been interacting in social responsibility issues because the political climate has been that such public responsibilities belong to the state. Today the political climate is different and thus there is an ongoing change in the business world. Meanwhile, the political situation is more unstable than ever and the progress of individuals philanthropic and moral agenda have gained momentum, demanding a shared social responsibility among the community. The aim of this study is to answer the two research questions, how is CSR interpreted by employees in construction organizations? And, what are the drivers and constraints of CSR in the construction sector? A qualitative research study consisting of 14 interviews has been conducted. In total six companies of different sizes, varying from medium-sized to very large have participated in the research. The empirical data indicates that CSR is a broad and complex concept, which has many different interpretations among the employees. People working with CSR issues in their role at the company have a definition of CSR that correlates with what is written in the theory, meanwhile employees with other functions often refers CSR to the environmental aspect of sustainability and technical solutions. Sponsorship and recruitment-programs seems to be two CSR activities that are well integrated in the construction sector. The identification of several drivers and constraints, which are organized into three different CSR levels have been conducted. The first level related to individuals and their commitment. The second level is linked to the organizations and their strategies. The third level refers to the public and stakeholders demands related to the external environment outside the organization. The study indicates that in the construction sector all three levels need to be considered, interact and have a proactive approach to push forward businesses CSR behavior. Moreover it is suggested that clients demands and procurement conditions, stakeholder pressure and external events, employees and management's commitment, employees requests and, the organization's CSR strategy are factors that are important in 2 the development of CSR. The study highlights the importance of management to focus on employee people with CSR knowledge and give them mandate, for the progress of CSR in the industry. However, lack of resources in terms of both money, time, interest and knowledge, lack of clients CSR demands, CSR complexity and difficulty in measuring CSR effects have shown to be constraints to the development of CSR.
Samhällsbyggnadsteknik , Civil Engineering