What Drivers Determine CSR Strategies in the Energy Industry? Evidence From Italy


This paper moves from the awareness that companies in the energy sector are increasingly stimulated to deal with the growing societal challenges – like scarcity of resources and high political instability. Hence, companies in this industry are more and more pushed to fit their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy to the pressures of the external contexts. The ways how these companies develop and implement their CSR strategies is however highly diversified, leading to the objectives of this paper. Referring to the Italian context, different configurations of CSR can be identified and classified, when analysing different energy companies that compete in the energy value chain. In details, the goal of this paper is to investigate if a link exists between key features of companies’ profile and key dimensions of CSR, thus defining fixed categories of adopted CSR configurations for certain energy companies’ profiles. The investigation is carried out through a case study methodology, concerning eight Italian energy companies. Data were collected from a documental analysis and from exploratory interviews with CSR mangers and other informants. The investigation highlighted significant differences in terms of CSR configurations considering Oil & Gas companies versus utilities enterprises due to the different stakeholders addressed and the different challenges to be faced.

Author Information
Francesca Mapelli, Politecnico di Milano, Italy
Marika Arena, Politecnico di Milano, Italy
Giovanni Azzone, Politecnico di Milano, Italy

Paper Information
Conference: ECSEE2016
Stream: Economic Sustainability: Sustainable Businesses and CSR

This paper is part of the ECSEE2016 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon