Trends in the literature on socially responsible investment: looking for the keys under the lamppost

Business Ethics 21 (3):239-250 (2012)
Abstract
In this paper, we use online search engines and archive collections to examine the popularity of socially responsible investing (SRI) in newspapers and academic journals. A simple content analysis suggests that most of the papers on SRI focus on financial performance. This profusion of research is somewhat puzzling as most of the studies used roughly the same methodology and obtained very similar results. So, why are there so many studies on SRI financial performance? We argue that the academic literature on SRI is mostly data driven: the famous ‘looking for the keys under the lamppost’ syndrome. The question of the financial performance of the SRI funds is certainly relevant but maybe too much attention has been paid to this issue, whereas more research is needed on a conceptual and theoretical ground, in particular the aspirations of SRI investors, the relationship between regulation and SRI as well as the assessment of extra-financial performances
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References found in this work BETA
William B. Irvine (1987). The Ethics of Investing. Journal of Business Ethics 6 (3):233 - 242.

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Jacob Park (2005). Beyond Good Intentions. International Corporate Responsibility Series 2:101-108.
Donald H. Schepers (2006). Some Observations on the Global Practice of Socially Responsible Investment. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society 17:164-169.
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