Company Stakeholder Responsibility : A Case Study of H&M and their CSR Strategy

University essay from Mälardalens högskola/Akademin för hållbar samhälls- och teknikutveckling; Mälardalens högskola/Akademin för hållbar samhälls- och teknikutveckling


Problem: The scarcity of resources and increasing awareness of human rights issues in the media and the public are increasing the pressure on companies to introduce a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy. Company Stakeholder Responsibility is a relatively new model in this field and is suggesting a wider approach to CSR.

Purpose: The purpose of this thesis is to describe the topics of CSR, Stakeholder Theory and Company Stakeholder Responsibility and apply them in order to analyze the CSR strategy of H&M. The focus is on the similarities and differences between the theoretical requirements of the Company Stakeholder Responsibility model and the practical CSR strategy currently applied by H&M.

Method: The approach used in this thesis is a case study approach with a focus on documentary exegesis. Documents were collected from H&M, media and NGOs and two interviews were conducted.

Result: The CSR strategy of H&M is based on their seven commitments and has a very strong focus on the work with their suppliers. The main instrument for the implementation of the strategy is their Code of Conduct (COC) and for the monitoring, there is an auditing system with regular audits conducted by H&M.

Conclusion: H&M with their CSR strategy has many similarities with the Company Stakeholder Responsibility model and they are trying to expand it to more stakeholders. While their strong focus on suppliers is good because they are their most important stakeholders, which also brings a danger of neglecting other stakeholder in terms of CSR. The strong focus on the price in their business model might also bring problems.

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