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Creating Shared Value (CSV) - A Critical Analysis

Creating shared value (CSV) is a concept popularized by Porter and Kramer in the Harvard Business Review, 2011 and has risen to prominence both in CSR practice and management education.

The attached analysis that will be forthcoming in the California Management Review (Vol 56, 2, Winter 2014) evaluates the concept of shared value both in terms of its stated aims and its overall contribution to understanding the social role and responsibilities of corporations. The paper formed the basis of a keynote presentation (video below) at the University of Sydney's Balanced Enterprise Research Network's CSR Symposium, January 2014,  by Dirk Matten, Professor of Strategy, Schulich School of Business, York University. 

The linked blog identifes 4 key problems with the CSV concept: 

1. It is unoriginal 
2. It ignores the tensions between social and economic goals
3. It is naive about business compliance
4. It is based on a shallow conception of the corporation's role in society

Materials

  • Contesting the Value of the Shared Value Concept
  • Four big problems with "Creating Shared Value" - Blog
  • Video: Contesting the Value of the Creating Shared Value Concept
  • These resources can be downloaded by members of Learning and Teaching Sustainability. Consider registering to be part of this community of practice

Intended Audience and Usage

Particularly relevant to a post-graduate audience.

In addition to providing a helpful critique, the paper includes a useful table outlining the strengths and weaknesses of the shared value concept.

The video and blog site provide additional resources and commentary. 

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