Impact of CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) on Business Performance of Leading Oil and Gas Companies in UAE A Research Proposal

Impact of CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) on BusinessPerformance of Leading Oil and Gas Companies in UAE: A ResearchProposal

Impact of CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) on BusinessPerformance of Leading Oil and Gas Companies in UAE: A ResearchProposal

Over the recent past, the conception of corporate socialresponsibility has attracted the consideration of the business world,as well as academic researchers. The consideration has sufficedbecause the general performance of an organization grounds on theactivities that the company engages in while upholding its image tothe public, as well as to other stakeholders involved. Intrinsically,corporate social responsibility involves activities undertaken withthe objective of cultivating factors like the social situations,safeguarding the ecology, and the protection of the stakeholders’interests.

Accordingto Blodgett et al. (2014), companies should begin bracketing theirfinancial interests with the well-being of the society andcommunities within which they operate. Regardless, while focusing onthis, organizations have to enumerate the impact of their corporatesocial activities on their business since while looking to establisha positive corporate image organizations have to mind stakeholders’interests. These interests are primarily the business success factorsand performance management within an organization. In this regards,the research proposal explores the impact of corporate socialresponsibility on the business performance of leading oil and gascompanies.


Theresearch questions are:

  • How have the corporate social responsibilities of leading oil and gas companies helped them to achieve better business performance?

  • Which are the corporate social responsibility practices that influence better business performance in the oil and gas industry?

Justificationof the research proposal

Given the attention that CSR has received from business scholars andanalysts, many have come to perceive it to be a robust link betweenfirms and stakeholders. At the same time, CSR has assumed the role ofa key image-branding tool thus, global companies have investedheavily in CSR. Nonetheless, in the modern business world, there isneed to associate CSR with business performance. As Cavitch (2014)asserts, the ultimate goal of an organization is to make profits andto satisfy the needs of the stakeholders. Given this, the managementof the businesses have to ensure that the firms’ practices aregeared towards boosting the business performance, and consequently,financial performance. This research proposal, therefore, sets theplatform for investigating the CSR conduct of leading oil and gascompanies, so to establish the performance and impact of the same ontheir businesses. At the same time, given that the oil and gasindustry is one of the strongest sectors of the global economy,establishing the conduct of CSR within it will provide a frameworkfor studies of the same topic in other fields.

Preliminaryliterature review

Spangler and Pomper (2011) assert that the nature of the oil and gasindustry demands companies to be proactive in social responsibility.Among others, the need for this is to ensure that their businessesoperate in an ethical and environmentally friendly manner. As regardsto business, Zhu, Sun, and Leung (2014) are of the opinion that thereis a close relationship between social responsibility and reputation.As such, analysts can conclude that CSR is an imperative component ofbusiness strategy in the oil and gas industry.

Accordingto Hargrave (2015), globalization has forced international companiesto acclimatize to new ways of convincing the public and stakeholdersabout the mode of their operations. In this regard, studies haveidentified CSR as a key tool in placing an organization’s image inthe public in a positive manner, to gain support from them(Hargraves, 2015). This support comes in the form of customerloyalty, brand support and social association with a company’simage (MacLnnis, Park, and Priester (2014). While all this haveindependent influences on the performance of a given organization,they influence the way that the company does its businesses, and howit makes profits in the market.

Carrigaand Mele (2013) point out that while CSR applies to all types ofbusinesses and industries, there has been an increase in CSRactivities in some industries, more than others. Some of thebusinesses with the biggest increases in CSR activity are within themanufacturing, energy, and retail sectors. The oil and gas sectorlies within the energy sector, and companies within the energy sectorare in perpetual competition to outclass each other regardingcustomer loyalty and global recognition. As such, Kirat (2015) notesthat most organizations have invested heavily in CSR, which isrecognized as an incipient tool for growth and sustainability.


This research will be guided by the CSR triple bottom linephilosophy, which is a well-known way of discussing CSR with specialemphasis on the economic, social and environmental responsibilityfacets. According to Henriques and Richardson (2013), Elkingtonintroduced the triple bottom line model. A company, while applyingthe triple bottom line philosophy in its CSR practices, puts emphasison the economic aspect of its business engagement, environmentalimpact and influence on the society. An organization has to satisfyall these three entities, to attain positive business impacts andrealize a balanced act (Savitz, 2012 Gimenez, Sierra, and Rodon,2012). The diagram below represents the triple bottom line aspect ofCSR applied by successful companies.

Figure1: Triple Bottom line structure.

Thestudy will investigate how each aspect influences positive businessperformance for the leading oil and gas industries across the globeby utilizing the highlighted model.

Statementof contribution

The exploration will contribute to the gap in knowledge about theimpact of CSR on business performance of oil and gas companies. Whilea body of literature has extensively covered the impact of CSR on thebusiness and financial performance of organizations, the oil and gasindustry has not been sufficiently covered. At the same time, thefindings of the paper will apply to companies that are looking toadjust their CSR practices to match and outdo competitors in theindustry.


This research will employ multi-faceted methodologies. There shall beprimary research and secondary research. Primary research willinvolve the collection of primary data from research participants byutilizing questionnaires and interviews. The secondary research willbe used to collect secondary information to back up and explain thephenomena observed from the primary method. The secondary informationwill include published journal articles, company reports, andrelevant websites.

Researchplan and outline

Introduction– Introduces the topic

Literaturereview – Reviews existing literature on CSR and the oil and gasindustry

Methodology– Describes the methodology to be used to study the topic

Datacollection – Describes the data collected and arranges itcategorically

Analysisand results – Examines the collected data and arranges itcategorically

Discussion– Discuses the findings from the analysis

Conclusion– Gives concluding remarks to the discourse



Duration (In months)


Literature review




Data analysis


Conclusion and implications



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Gimenez, C, Sierra, V, and Rodon, J, (2012), ‘Sustainableoperations: Their impact on the triple bottom line,’ InternationalJournal of Production Economics, 140(1), 149-159.

Hargrave, T, (2015), ‘Review:Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility: Stakeholders,Globalization, and Sustainable Value Creation,’&nbspAcademyof Management Learning and Education,amle-2015.

Henriques, A, and Richardson, J,(Eds,), (2013),&nbspThetriple bottom line: Does it all add up,Routledge.

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MacInnis, D, J, Park, C, W, andPriester, J, W, (2014),&nbspHandbookof brand relationships,Routledge.

Savitz, A, (2012),&nbspThetriple bottom line: How today`s best-run companies are achievingeconomic, social and environmental success–and how you can too,John Wiley and Sons.

Spangler, I, S, and Pompper, D,(2011), ‘Corporate social responsibility and the oil industry:Theory and perspective fuel a longitudinal view,’&nbspPublicRelations Review,&nbsp37(3),217-225.

Zhu, Y, Sun, L, Y, and Leung, A, S,(2014), ‘Corporate social responsibility, firm reputation, and firmperformance: The role of ethical leadership,’&nbspAsiaPacific Journal of Management,&nbsp31(4),925-947.