Determinants of Consumer Attributions of Corporate Social Responsibility

Journal of Business Ethics 138 (2):247-260 (2016)

Abstract
Prior research has found attributions to mediate the relationship between the elements of corporate social responsibility activities and consumer responses to firms; however, the question of what variables determine consumer attributions of CSR remains partially unaddressed. This article analyzes why consumers make attributions of CSR that are either positive, or negative. The results obtained from two empirical studies indicate that company–cause fit, corporate ability, and interpersonal trust have a positive influence on the motives that consumers attribute to CSR, whereas corporate hypocrisy has a negative effect. This research contributes to our understanding of the psychological mechanisms underlying impactful consumer judgments and provides guidance for organizations in responding to such evaluations.
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-015-2578-4
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