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Reporting Of CSR Activities In India – Are We Still At A Nascent Stage Even After The Legal Mandate?

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‘Reporting Of CSR Activities In India – Are We Still At A Nascent Stage Even After The Legal Mandate?’ is a Chapter authored by Sumona Ghosh in the book Corporate Social Responsibility in India: Cases and Developments after the Legal Mandate edited by Ms. Nayan Mitra and Dr. Rene Schmidpeter and published by Springer International Publishing, Switzerland under its CSR, Sustainability, Ethics and Governance series. The Book is available both in e-version and hard copy from Springer as well as Amazon and many other online book stores all over the world. The abstract of the chapter is as follows:

Abstract: In this paper we have attempted to study Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) reporting made by select companies in their official websites, Sustainability Reports and Annual Reports for a period of five financial years (FY) from 2009-10 to 2013-14  i.e. during the pre and post mandate onset period, by conducting an empirical and analytical study. Data was then generated from such an analysis using longitudinal Qualitative Document Analysis to show trends as well as absolute CSR levels of Indian companies for the aforesaid five year period. “Number of sentences” was used as a unit of measurement to measure the extent of information reported. It was noted that companies were more prone towards reporting of CSR activities in their official websites than Annual Reports. Infact, the reporting of CSR information was not satisfactory in case of Annual Reports both in the pre and post mandate onset period. Besides, the important sections of the Annual Reports like “Chairman/CEO message,” “Managing Director’s message” and “Letter to the Shareholders,” still do not lay emphasis on reporting of CSR as compared to financial information. However, although, there was an increase in the proportion of companies publishing Sustainability Reports from 2009- 10 to 2013-14, but still there were companies without Sustainability Reports too. The average sentences reported in the Sustainability Reports was observed to be highly inconsistent both in the pre and post mandate onset period.

Key Words: CSR Reporting, Longitudinal Qualitative Document Analysis, Companies Act 2013, Pre and Post Mandate onset Period

Author brief:

Dr. Sumona Ghosh has been associated with St. Xavier’s College Kolkata (India) since 2002. Presently she is the Head of Business Regulatory Framework in the Department of Commerce. After completing her post-graduation in Commerce with rare distinction, Prof. Ghosh has done her PhD on Business Management from the University of Calcutta in 2014. The title of her doctoral dissertation was “Pattern of participation of Public and Private sector companies in Corporate Social Responsibility Activities”. She has published in journals of national and international repute. Dr Ghosh has been highly acclaimed for her guest lectures on CSR in premier institutes of higher learning including the Indian Institute of Management (Calcutta), Indian Institute of Management (Shillong) and Management Development Programmes on CSR. She has presented papers on CSR at various national and international conferences.

Also Read: 

Corporate Social Responsibility in India: Cases and Developments after the legal mandate, an overview

Contents of the Book Corporate Social Responsibility in India: Cases and Developments after the legal mandate

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