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Corporate Social Responsibility in the Reagan Era and Beyond
Frederick, William C.
25/3  (Spring 1983): 145-157

The article focuses on corporate social responsibility in the U.S. One way to move beyond present levels of corporate social responsiveness is to form social partnerships or coalitions of business, government, labor unions, universities, and various community groups. These conditions might be able to address social needs that are beyond the economic and technological reach of corporations acting alone. Corporate social responsibility, the idea that business firms have an obligation to act for the social good, even if in so doing they may pursue activities not normally in the business domain, possibly lowering their economic profits in the process, is an idea that has been vigorously debated in the U.S. since the early 1950s. The philosophical belief that those in power should be called to account for their power by those subject to it extends far back into human history. The application of this principle to the contemporary business corporation was first observed in the early years of the 20th century. Allowing for the vicissitudes of depressions and warfare, the idea has gathered strength as the corporation became primary vehicle for organizing business operations in the U.S..

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