Institutional Analysis and Development of Organizational Social Responsibility: A Mixed Approach

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Assistant Professor, Department of Business Administration, Faculty of Business and Economics, Persian Gulf University, Bushehr, Iran.

2 Ph.D., Human Resource Management, Instructor, Department of Management and Accounting, Zanjan University, Zanjan, Iran.


This study sought to develop and improve the concept of corporate social responsibility. Accordingly, the Institutional Analysis and Development Framework (IAD) was used to answer the following question: What are the social responsibilities of organizations regarding the institutional viewpoint? Is it possible to provide a model for the social responsibility of organizations?
The research paradigm was interpretive with a qualitative approach. This was a case study and qualitative content analysis research. Fuzzy Delphi and DEMATEL were used to analyze the gathered data. Data were collected by in-depth unstructured interviews and the snowball sampling method was applied to select the interviewees. After conducting the interviews and analyzing the data, the fuzzy Delphi method was used to identify the institutional factors affecting the development and improvement of corporate social responsibility.
The interviews were analyzed via qualitative content analysis and by MAXQDA software. Accordingly, seven main concepts were extracted: norms and ethical principles, social legitimacy, culture building, observance of rules and regulations, institutional pressures, characteristics of society, material or physical conditions of society. In order to summarize the experts' opinions about the relationship among the main concepts derived from the interviews, the results were sent to eight university professors as well as five experienced managers. After three times of analyzing and summarizing the comments, irrelevant or very insignificant concepts were removed. Eventually, three main variables and four mediating variables were identified.
To develop and improve the concept of corporate social responsibility with an institutional perspective, the framework of institutional analysis and development was used to identify cultural and social characteristics in society, laws, and regulations related to corporate social responsibility, and to clarify how managers adhere to these rules. Also, during the interactions of individuals, the role of unwritten norms and rules related to social responsibility and the capacity to guide or prevent laws and norms in guiding behaviors were considered. The results proved that laws and regulations have a mediating and marginal role in the formation of social responsibility of organizations, but how to implement the laws is a part of corporate social responsibility. The obtained results indicated that the social responsibility in organizations does not occur either independently in a social vacuum and to achieve the internal and external legitimacy of the organization, the social relations of organizations should be considered in normative, ethical, or cultural formats. Of course, laws, institutional pressures, societal characteristics, and economic conditions of organizations are also influential. The results of this study also showed that, unlike Western companies that seek social legitimacy in accordance with the laws, in Iranian companies, social legitimacy is affected by ethics and social norms. In addition, the current study indicated that corporate social responsibility is not a systematic behavior and it appears in critical conditions.


Main Subjects

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