Corporate social responsibility and sustainability in Scandinavia: an overview

Robert Strand, R. Edward Freeman, Kai Hockerts

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialOtherpeer-review

86 Citations (Scopus)


Scandinavia is routinely cited as a global leader in corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainability. In this article, we explore the foundation for this claim while also exploring potential contributing factors. We consider the deep-seated traditions of stakeholder engagement across Scandinavia including the claim that the recent concept of “creating shared value” has Scandinavian origins, institutional and cultural factors that encourage strong CSR and sustainability performances, and the recent phenomenon of movement from implicit to explicit CSR in a Scandinavian context and what this may entail. In sum, we depict the state of the art in CSR and sustainability in Scandinavia. We intend for this to serve as a basis to help establish a globally recognized research paradigm dedicated to considering CSR and sustainability in a Scandinavian context.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Business Ethics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Creating shared value
  • CSR
  • Scandinavia
  • Scandinavian cooperative advantage
  • Sustainability

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