Corporate Social Responsibility: Envisioning Its Social Implications
Gérard Fonteneau, advisor of the European Trade Union Confederation, offers a critical perspective on the development of corporate social responsibility, which is in full empathy with some of the main concerns that The Jus Semper Global Alliance has relative to the main path that CSR development has taken. Some of these concerns are:
- Why are corporations and, paradoxically, national and international public authorities as well as many civil organizations supporting a CSR which soothes the needs of corporations without equally addressing the needs of society?
- Why does the individual's social behaviour have to abide by national and international laws, whereas corporations are praised for developing their own social standards and for observing them on a voluntary basis with no legal bindings whatsoever?
- Are corporate citizens in supposedly democratic societies -where the governments' main responsibility is to procure the welfare of all ranks of society- to have special privileges above democracy and above the rule of law since there appears to be little intention to legislate corporate behaviour?
The author 's working paper constitutes a sound critique of CSR from the perspective of democratic societies and the future of its institutions, especially with regards to the potential impact of CSR on all sectors of civil society and, in particular, on the trade unions and their practices.