Risks (May 2022)

The Impact of Corporate Social Responsibility and Innovative Strategies on Financial Performance

  • Joana Costa,
  • José Pedro Fonseca

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 10, no. 5
p. 103


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The article aims to appraise the role of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and innovation strategies as leverages of a company’s financial performance. The theoretical and empirical statement of this link aims to reinforce the importance of these strategical options in both the managerial and the public policy domain. Shedding light on the economic return of these practices will help managers make better strategic decisions. Policy makers will also grasp the required evidence to encompass CSR in policy packages. To address the research question, data were collected from the Thomson Reuters Eikon Datastream covering the 1000 largest companies listed on the stock exchange worldwide. Thereafter, hierarchical linear regressions were performed to produce the econometric results. Two time frames (2015–2019) were compared to address time–space trends. Enrolling in CSR activities entails additional costs which can undermine the company’s financial performance if not properly supported by public policies. Combining CSR and innovation appears to be the best strategy for companies seeking improvements in their financial performance while being socially responsible. The contribution of this study is threefold: first, the analysis covers the largest thousand firms in operation worldwide; secondly, the econometric results demonstrate that combining CSR with innovation positively impacts financial performance; and lastly, the time comparison evidences a positive but slow evolution in CSR adoption. The article provides an applied perspective, of use both for managers and policy makers, as to how they should approach and disseminate involvement in these types of activities.