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CSR logics in developing countries: Translation, adaptation and stalled development

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Publication date: April 2017
Source:Journal of World Business, Volume 52, Issue 3

Author(s): Dima Jamali, Charlotte Karam, Juelin Yin, Vivek Soundararajan

In this paper, we advance an analytic framework to help better trace the meaning and practice of CSR in developing countries, which draws from an institutional logics approach combined with the Scandinavian institutionalist perspective on the circulation of ideas. We suggest a two-step analytic framework where (1) circulated generalized assumptive logics relevant to mainstream CSR understanding are translated for applicability to developing countries generally and (2) through further circulation these translated logics are adapted toward a more context-specific relevant and meaningful application of CSR. Translation and adaptation form the basis of ongoing “editing processes” which we use to help tease out the multiplicity of institutional logics captured in the CSR literature pertaining to four specific countries of interest: China, India, Nigeria and Lebanon. The nuanced analysis presented helps provide relevant implications in relation to supranational, as well as culturally embedded and nuanced institutional logics shaping CSR in developing countries. It also highlights the existence of a hybridity of entangled institutional logics shaping not only CSR expressions in the four focal developing countries, but also ensuing patterns of development.

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