CSR – New online database

Posted on: March 14, 2009

More news from IPRRC Miami – Prof Mary Ann Ferguson of the University of Florida is a well known researcher on corporate social responsibility (CSR). She and colleagues have built up a database of all the awards – national and international – that are given for best practice in CSR.


In a beta form, it can be found at and is fully searchable.


One research outcome from their review of awards is that companies which have received at least one award for CSR have profits that are on average $1 billion a year greater than those which have not. The winner’s revenues are $13 billion greater than those without. Does this mean that CSR really is “business effective” or a factor of the size and management performance of the companies? A correlation is implied but CSR is only one factor in a corporation’s performance.


Companies winning most awards are PepsiCo, Marriott International, Texas Instruments, Microsoft, Kraft Foods, Nike, Cisco Systems, Novartis, Principal Finance and Citigroup (!). Nike, in particular is under constant activist criticism for its behaviour and Citigroup is a financial basket case at present.


Sectors most likely to win CSR awards are accommodation and food, electronics, professional and scientific, information and manufacturing. The laggards are construction, utilities, management of companies and transportation.


3 Responses to "CSR – New online database"

Thanks for your input on our work. I’m really impressed with your blog. You definitely contribute great value to the public relations research community.

Sean: That’s kind of you to be supportive of this blog. Please keep me and the blog posted with developments on It will be an important resource, world-wide. TOM

Of course! As of right now, there’s a lot of technical, functional, and aesthetic changes that need to be made, but I can’t start on them until Dr. Ferguson’s class is finished entering CSR programs at the end of the semester.

Once they are, we’re going to add features such as a social networking function for CSR researchers to display a bibliography of their works, network with one another, post blog entries, and share interesting CSR links.

Researchers will also be able to rate (1-5) and post reviews of any CSR program on the site. We’ll have a section for the “most popular,” “highest rated,” and “most reviewed” CSR programs.

By that time our data set will be quite large, and we’ll be able to run some statistical analyses on companies and CSR giving researchers access to a wealth of information to work with.

These are just a few of the things in the works.

By that way, I liked your blog so much that I submitted it to a few of my social bookmarking/social networking services. You may notice (or have already noticed) a jump in your traffic.

Thanks again!

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Tom Watson

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