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29 Mar 2012

Dr Patel (MIB Program Director) publishes article in Business and Society journal

Dr Taran Patel, Program Director, Master in International Business (MIB) – Grenoble Campus; and Associate Professor, GEM, has recently published an article in Business and Society, a CNRS-listed journal.
The article entitled 'A Transactional Culture Analysis of Corporate Sustainability Reporting Practices: Six Examples from India' is co-authored with Dr Steve Rayner from the University of Oxford.


In this article Patel and Rayner explain that Corporate Sustainability (CS) can be defined as organizations' commitment to profitability, environment and social well-being

This study uses a transactional culture analysis of CS reporting practices to explain why some Indian organizations conform to voluntary CS reporting guidelines and others do not. 
Most past studies typically use national culture to explain differences in CS practices across nations. The national culture concept embeds corporate cultures within the larger national culture, neglecting intra-nation diversity. Conversely, according to the transactional culture approach (TCA) used in this study, cultures are plural and independent of geo-ethnic boundaries, and emerge through social transactions. TCA encourages multilevel explorations of complex social phenomena.

Since CS reporting preferences are the outcome of ongoing transactions among organizational stakeholders across different levels, TCA is more appropriate for this study. The authors use Mary Douglas’s Cultural Framework (DCF) as a transactional framework of social accountability.

A qualitative exploration of six Indian organizations using DCF reveals different dominant forms of social accountability in these organizations: either alone or as paired hybrids.

Consequently, each organization prioritizes different stakeholders and reacts differently to voluntary CS reporting guidelines.
The authors explain that identifying the dominant form or forms of social accountability in organizations and understanding their underlying reasons for resisting voluntary CS guidelines will enable managers to secure better collaboration for their CS initiatives.