Effects on the (CSR) Reputation: CSR reporting discussed in the light of signalling and stakeholder perception theories

Research output: Journal contributionsScientific review articlesResearch


The aim of this conceptual paper is to discuss the impact of CSR reporting on the CSR reputation in the light of signalling and stakeholder perception theories. The method used is a literature analysis on CSR and reputation, corporate signalling and signalling CSR. For a more complete picture, the review includes findings on CSR reporting and the perception and evaluation of CSR activities by stakeholders, first for stakeholders in general, but in greater detail for the two specific groups 'consumers' and 'employees'. The paper's main contribution is a conceptual framework for CSR reporting which explains how a CSR report is a CSR communication signal filtered by the signalling context and the stakeholders' perception. This includes a discussion of how CSR reporting can modify the outcome for the CSR reputation favourably or unfavourably which also leads to a modified context for CSR reporting. The paper's originality lies in the analysis and discussion of both the impacts of signalling theory on CSR reporting and how the interpretation of the signal impacts the CSR reputation. The article thus contributes to the knowledge on CSR reporting and its impact on the formation of CSR reputation.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCorporate Reputation Review
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)281-296
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 01.12.2016