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Corporate Social Responsibility in Mining in Southern Africa: Fair accountability or just greenwash?

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RALPH HAMANN AND PAUL KAPELUS ARGUE THAT CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY (CSR)-RELATED NARRATIVES AND PRACTICES CAN BE FRUITFULLY ASSESSED WITH REFERENCE TO ACCOUNTABILITY AND FAIRNESS AS KEY CRITERIA. BRIEF CASE STUDIES OF MINING IN SOUTH AFRICA AND ZAMBIA SUGGEST THAT THERE ARE STILL IMPORTANT GAPS BETWEEN MINING COMPANIES’ CSR ACTIVITIES, ON THE ONE HAND, AND ACCOUNTABILITY AND FAIRNESS, ON THE OTHER. THE CONCLUSION IS THAT COMPANIES’ CSR-RELATED CLAIMS, AND PARTICULARLY THE REFERENCE TO A BUSINESS CASE FOR VOLUNTARY INITIATIVES, NEED TO BE TREATED WITH CAUTION. CSR IS NOT NECESSARILY OR ONLY GREENWASH, BUT THERE IS A NEED TO ENGAGE BUSINESS CRITICALLY TOWARDS MORE SINCERE VERSIONS OF CSR.:Development (2004) 47, 85–92. doi:10.1057/palgrave.development.1100056
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2004-09-01

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