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Corporate Social Responsibility, Standardization and Critical Management

Guest Editors:

Miguel Delattre, Université Lyon 3 ( France)
Rodolphe Ocler, University of Bedfordshire, (United Kingdom)
Catalina Stinikov, University of Craiova, (Romania)

Deadline:  January 31, 2013

About the special issue:

The term Corporate Social Responsibility has become part of the economic vocabulary since the seventh decade of the 20th century. Since the beginning of the 21st century, this term extended and became complex and multidimensional, with many economic, legal and social connections. Corporate Social Responsibility focuses not only on the means of using companies’ profits, but also on the means and ways in which companies achieve these profits, and as such encompasses subjects as ethics, justice,  moral choices and behaviours.Social responsibility means considering stakeholders’ expectations, and the management of economic, social and environmental domains manifested in relations with stakeholders in all areas of influence: the workplace, market, value adding chain, community and public policies. The companies must address these issues from a strategic point of view.

As a logical step, in 2010 the draft of ISO 26000 for social responsibility was approved. Providing harmonized globally pertinent guidance for private and public sector corporations of all types based on international agreement among expert of the main stakeholder groups, normalization is supposed to support the implementation of best practice in global social responsibility. ISO 26000 provides an understanding of what SR is and what corporations are required to do to operate in a socially responsible manner.

Nevertheless, it has been agreed that certification of this guidance standard meets neither its purpose nor is it even possible. Although some stakeholders might feel this means losing an important option, other applications of the standard appear to be much more sustainable and more congruent within the spirit of the standard. Also, contrary to customary practice in ISO's standards, the ISO 26000 clearly states that it is not a standard. It is not suitable for certification reasons or regulatory or contractual use. This is congruent with the fact that there is no structured process for its incorporation into the practices of a company. Since ISO's CSR standard cannot be used to certify compliance with its criteria of a user's best practices and has no management systems language for its implementation, the incentive to use it becomes more and more diluted.

In this regard, the instrumentalization of CSR based on normalization can be questioned as such. While it may be considered to provide the business case for CSR, it can also be argued that under this approach, CSR is only treated as a simple vision and ideal theoretical perspective with no concrete ground for application.


Drawing on these preliminary thoughts, we seek theoretical and empirical papers which may address but need not be limited to the following issues:

CSR and international dimension
- To what degree is CSR universally applicable?
- Transnational approach on CSR – does exist ?

CSR – standardization and normalization
- Can CSR be standardized ?
- Could CSR be standardized at international level? Is national normalization necessary ?
- Global standardization vs. national normalization of CSR in corporations
- Is ISO 26000 a standard able to measure and become compulsory for corporate responsibility ?

CSR – standardization and critical management
- What is the link between the process of normalization and post-colonialism when it comes to CRS?
- What are the gaps between the discourse on CRS and its implementation?

This call for papers invites studies that offer insights for managers and academics on how CSR standardization can be achieved.
For practitioners, this special issue aims at providing ideas, insights and applicable knowledge.
For academics in turn, the issue should be of interest because it will contain theoretical approaches, contributions to further theory development, and empirical studies on corporate practices.


 The following deadlines will be applied:

- Papers are to be submitted by January 31, 2013
- Reviews will be send to the authors by the March 31, 2013
- Final papers must be received by the  June 1, 2013 for a publication in October 2013


Manuscript submissions must go through the online submission system at Please remember to choose the 'Corporate Social Responsibility, Standardization and Critical Management' issue rather than the regular issue when you submit.

Papers should be between 3,000 and 6,000 words for theoretical papers and empirical studies, and should follow the author guidelines which can be obtained from

Submitted papers should make clear their relevance to business and management practice, as well as their academic significance. We also welcome joint papers by academics and practitioners.


Contact the Guest Editors: 

For further questions, please contact the special issue editors with the following details.

Dr.Miguel Delattre, Université Lyon 3, France -[email protected]

Dr. Rodolphe Ocler, University of Bedfordshire, United Kingdom -[email protected]

Dr.Catalina Sitnikov, University of Craiova, Romania -[email protected]