The Roots of Corporate Philanthropy in China

Bergman, Zinette and Bergman, Manfred Max and Liu, Baocheng and Zhang, Jiaqi. (2015) The Roots of Corporate Philanthropy in China. Journal of International Business Ethics, 8 (1). pp. 3-27.

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Business and society are inextricably linked, and corporate philanthropy is an important constituent of this link. Depending on context and culture, considerable variat ions of roles exist that societal stakeholders occupy or expectations that they have of business. In this paper, we examine how philanthropy connects to various historical, polit ical, cultural, social, and economic dimensions in modern-day China to understand how philanthropy occupies important functions conventionally associated with corporate responsibility (CR). Even though philanthropy has fallen out of favor in the international CR literature, it is nevertheless part of contemporary China, deeply rooted in the past and in contemporary relat ions between business and society. By examining historical and contemporary factors that contribute to how philanthropy is shaping understandings of the responsibilit ies of business to society, we will show in this article the rich repertoire of registers that business and society can draw on when defining roles and expectations, and that the choice of register is largely driven by creativity and pragmatism. To understand the role of philanthropy in China today, one must understand the systemic relations between state and business, and the all-encompassing and state-managed drive toward economic and social development. By presenting the importance of philanthropy and how it helps to understand the increasingly powerful role of Chinese business in local and global contexts, we hope to encourage a closer examinat ion of philanthropy from a non-Western perspective in general, as well as policy-relevant and change-oriented academic research on corporate philanthropy in China in the context of CR in particular.
Faculties and Departments:04 Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Departement Gesellschaftswissenschaften > Fachbereich Soziologie > Sozialforschung und Methodologie (Bergman)
UniBasel Contributors:Bergman, Manfred Max and Bergman, Zinette
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:American Scholars Press
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Last Modified:25 Mar 2019 15:01
Deposited On:25 Mar 2019 15:01

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