Apparel firms’ corporate social responsibility communications: Cases of six firms from an institutional theory perspective

Hongjoo Woo, Byoungho Jin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose – Corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication is a strategy to address companies’ goodwill to the society. Based on the institutional theory suggesting the influence of environmental factors of companies’ country-of-origins on their marketing practices, the purpose of this paper is to explore and compare the CSR communication practices of apparel firms from different countries. Design/methodology/approach – As a case study approach, this study investigates six apparel firms’ CSR communication disclosures on the official websites using a content analysis method and the Global Reporting Initiative’s categorial CSR reporting guidelines. Findings – Findings revealed that the six firms’ CSR communication adoption levels and focusses varied; the USA firms largely focussed on labor issues, while the European firms focussed on environmental issues and the Asian firms centered on social issues. Research limitations/implications – Although this study has limitations that pertain to case studies in general, this study provides academic contributions to the literature and managerial implications about different CSR focusses and communication activities across countries. Originality/value – CSR is especially important for the apparel business that highly involves social issues such as labor-intensive production. However, limited research showed how apparel firms are actually communicating CSR. This study was one of the early attempts on this topic.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-55
Number of pages19
JournalAsia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jan 11

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Strategy and Management
  • Marketing


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