Business and Children: Mapping Impacts, Managing Responsibilities

Journal of Business Ethics 91 (4):567-586 (2010)
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Abstract

In recent years, issues of childhood obesity, unsafe toys, and child labor have raised the question of corporate responsibilities to children. However, business impacts on children are complex, multi-faceted, and frequently overlooked by senior managers. This article reports on a systematic analysis of the reputational landscape constructed by the media, corporations, and non-government organizations around business responsibilities to children. A content analysis methodology is applied to a sample of more than 350 relevant accounts during a 5-year period. We identify seven core responsibilities that are then used to provide a framework for enabling businesses to map their range of impacts on children. We set out guidelines for how to identify and manage the firm’s strategic responsibilities in this arena, and identify the␣constraints that corporations face in meeting such responsibilities.

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