Developing the wider role of business in society: The experience of Microsoft in developing training and supporting employability

Elena Bonfiglioli, Lance Moir, Véronique Ambrosini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to describe Microsoft's activities in encouraging employability and to show how these activities provide strategic advantage Design/methodology/approach: Two of Microsoft's corporate responsibility initiatives linked to the development of employment in Europe are described and it is shown how these activities have created sustainable competitive advantage for Microsoft through an analysis of industrial organisation economics and the resource-based view of the firm. Reflects on the characteristics of these involvements and points to aspects which may have wider applicability. Findings: Involvement in societal projects can contribute intangible assets to the firm whilst delivering social value. However these projects are part of wider coordinated activities with other organisations and with government. Research limitations: These are reflections on participation in business and hence the conclusions are not representative and the analysis is unstructured. Practical implications: These case studies will show other businesses how to think about their corporate social responsibility activities from a strategic viewpoint and will allow academics to see how business develops such strategies. Originality/value: These are rare descriptions of such projects, which are becoming more common in business.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)401-408
Number of pages8
JournalCorporate Governance: The International Journal of Business in Society
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Employee development
  • Human resource development
  • Philanthropy
  • Skills training

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