The impact of top management teams' faultlines on organizational transparency―Evidence from CSR initiatives

Business Ethics, the Environment and Responsibility 32 (4):1262-1276 (2023)
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Abstract

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) disclosure is becoming increasingly important in practice, yet knowledge about the antecedents of such CSR initiatives is limited. Drawing on faultline theories, we expect that the compositional attributes of top management teams, such as the level of heterogeneity, influence their decisions about CSR disclosure and reporting. Data and a sample from Chinese publicly traded companies are used to examine our hypotheses. Our results demonstrate that a top management team's faultline strength is negatively related to CSR disclosure decisions and CSR report quality. We contribute to the literature about CSR disclosure by offering specific insights, through a micro-level analysis, about how to compose and structure top management teams to advance CSR in emerging economies such as China. Practical implications for managers and policymakers are also discussed.

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Jidong Zhang
Kean College of New Jersey

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