The heterogeneity of socially responsible investment

Journal of Business Ethics 87 (4):519 - 533 (2009)
Abstract
Many writers have commented on the heterogeneity of the socially responsible investment (SRI) movement. However, few have actually tried to understand and explain it, and even fewer have discussed whether the opposite – standardisation – is possible and desirable. In this article, we take a broader perspective on the issue of the heterogeneity of SRI. We distinguish between four levels on which heterogeneity can be found: the terminological, definitional, strategic and practical. Whilst there is much talk about the definitional ambiguities of SRI, we suggest that there is actually some agreement on the definitional level. There are at least three explanations which we suggest can account for the heterogeneity on the other levels: cultural and ideological differences between different regions, differences in values, norms and ideology between various SRI stakeholders, and the market setting of SRI. Discussing the implications of the three explanations for the SRI market, we suggest that there is reason to be sceptical about the possibilities of standardisation if not standardisation is imposed top-down. Whether this kind of standardisation is desirable or not, we argue, depends on what the motives for it would be. To the extent that standardisation may facilitate the mainstreaming of SRI, it could be a good thing – but we entertain doubts about whether mainstreaming really requires standardisation.
Keywords ambiguity  business ethics  definitions  ethical investment  heterogeneity  mainstreaming  responsible investment  socially responsible investment  standardisation  sustainable investment
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 10,768
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Céline Louche & Steven Lydenberg (2006). Socially Responsible Investment. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society 17:112-117.
Michael Monahan (2002). The Ethics of Socially Responsible Investing. Business and Professional Ethics Journal 21 (3/4):27-46.

View all 11 references

Citations of this work BETA

View all 10 citations

Similar books and articles
Jacob Park (2005). Beyond Good Intentions. International Corporate Responsibility Series 2:101-108.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

17 ( #96,157 of 1,098,981 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

3 ( #114,620 of 1,098,981 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.