Corporate Social Responsibility Cuban style

Baden, Denise and Wilkinson, Stephen (2009) Corporate Social Responsibility Cuban style. In: Global Practices of Corporate Social Responsibility. Springer, Berlin-Heidelberg. ISBN 978-3-540-68812-9

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This chapter draws upon data collected over several research trips to Cuba undertaken between 2013 and 2017, that evidences how the concept of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is understood there. Firstly, some background on Cuba is provided, describing the island nation’s economic journey from the status of a free enterprise oriented US ‘neo-colony’ in the first half of the 20th century, through several decades of strong Soviet inspired state control after the 1959 revolution, before gradually adopting what has been termed a ‘market socialist’ model since Raúl Castro formally took over from Fidel Castro as President in 2007. The chapter then presents a snapshot of the fledgling state of CSR in Cuba as understood and practised in newly licensed private small and medium-sized enterprises and state-business partnerships. The kinds of practices that are seen as belonging under the CSR umbrella are compared. The chapter acknowledges the unique political and economic conditions in Cuba and the problems that arise in applying concepts, measures and definitions which have been formulated in the context of Western economies. The chapter therefore provides an insight into how CSR is constructed in a country that has adopted cultural norms of solidarity and collectivist ethics. This is contrasted with the way the concept is understood and operationalized in liberal capitalist countries with paradigmatically ‘neoliberal’ and individualist values, where the norm of self-interest prevails in economic discourse. Finally, we argue that this case study of CSR in a highly regulated economy offers a valuable input to the on-going debate over the merits and demerits of strong state regulation in terms of achieving socially and environmentally responsible business practices.

Item Type: Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords: Cuba, corporate social responsibility, economics, state regulation
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
Divisions: School of Humanities & Social Sciences > Economics
Depositing User: Stephen Wilkinson
Date Deposited: 27 Mar 2019 11:26
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2019 14:36

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