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Understanding how SME’s handle CSR activities connected to the supply chain: A qualitative study in a B2B context
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing.
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

It has been argued for the past years that one of today’s main important factors for

gaining competitive advantage is to implement CSR activities. There have been many

studies showing the many benefits CSR have, not only to the organizations but also to

society and the environment. However, CSR does not only concern the organization

itself but also ensuring that the social and environmental behaviour is accomplished

throughout the whole supply chain. Larger firms have the ability to implement and

focus on several tasks at once, while small and medium-sized enterprises are struggling

with limited resources and cannot afford any mistakes. This study is focusing on how

SMEs with limited resources implement CSR within the supply chain and what

difficulties they experience, since CSR is often seen as a complex and resource based

issue. A case study was conducted at a SME in a B2B context and the study is based on

a qualitative approach, with empirical data gathered from five in-depth interviews. After

the empirical data was analysed it was concluded that by decreasing the supplier base is

a way of gaining stronger contact and trust, also centralizing the supplier base in order

to decrease transportation and emissions. SMEs with limited resources can outsource

duties such as checkups and audits to external companies in order to assure quality and

environmental criteria’s. Also, being an SME with limited resources indicates that the

employees have to take on multiple roles in order to adapt to all customer and supplier

demands, which was shown to be a complexity since obligations such as making a

profitable procurement, were often prioritized before CSR. It was also found that the

internal CSR communication was a major contributor to the lack of knowledge as well

as interest in the subject, CSR is not seen as an obligation if not having anyone

responsible for the CSR activities. Lastly, both CSR and digitalization were found to be

two crucial keystones for organizational survival on the market.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. , p. 59
Keywords [en]
Corporate Social Responsibility, Supply Chain, Supply Chain Management, Sustainable Supply Chain, Communication, Small and medium-sized enterprises
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-65609OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-65609DiVA, id: diva2:1112278
External cooperation
Gerdmans Inredningar AB
Subject / course
Business Administration - Marketing
Educational program
International Sales and Marketing, 180 credits
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-06-21 Created: 2017-06-20 Last updated: 2017-06-21Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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