We are going to define Corporate Social Investment (CSI) and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Then, we will compare the two, so that you clearly understand the difference between CSR and CSI.
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Definition of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
Deloitte describes CSR as “how a firm manages its business processes to generate stakeholder value while having a positive impact on the community and minimising any adverse impact on the environment.”
In other words, CSR is how a business manages its operations so that it makes profits, while taking care of the community and minimising any damage to the environment.
Definition of Corporate Social Investment (CSI)
According to CSI Solutions, “CSI encompasses projects that are external to the normal business activities of a company and not directly for purposes of increasing company profit.”
In other words, CSI is any community development project which is not a part of the core business, and therefore is not intended to generate an income for the business. In other countries, it is referred to as Corporate Philanthropy.
An easy way of remembering the difference between the two is that CSI is one of the components of CSR. Investing in the community is part of a company’s responsibility as a corporate citizen.
Another way of looking at CSR vs. CSI
You could also look at it like this, CSR is how a business conducts itself responsibly, considering the triple bottom line, which is social, economic and environmental sustainability. While the business generates profits, it also has systems in place which ensure that it behaves responsibly towards people and nature.
CSI is a part of that responsible behaviour. It is the part where a company simply gives to the community without expecting any direct financial returns.
The concept of CSI (Corporate Social Investment) is that you, as a business, are investing in the community, to create long-term benefits for all. By improving the economic well-being of individuals, you won’t see returns immediately, but over time, those people could end up being your future clients, employees or business allies. When you uplift the community, you also create a more favourable environment for your business. This is therefore beneficial for the business and the community.
Other Articles Related to This
To read the other articles related to social responsibility and corporate social investment, you can click on the following links:
- Describe the Differences Between CSR and CSI
- Real World Examples of CSI and CSR: Google and GrandWest
- What is a Stakeholder in Business?
- Discover the Benefits of CSI to the Community
- Discuss the Disadvantages of CSR to the Community
You can download the flash cards below to help you with your exam revision. You will find more on my Facebook page: Nonjabulo SA. Share them with your friends and test each other online.
Bown, A. 2006. CSI or CSR – Are You a Learning NPO? NGO Pulse. http://www.ngopulse.org/article/csi-or-csr-are-you-learning-npo [07/04/2020]
CSI Solutions. The What and Why of CSI. http://www.csisolutions.co.za/why-csi.php [07/04/2020]
Deloitte Malta. Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability. https://www2.deloitte.com/mt/en/pages/about-deloitte/articles/mt-crs.html [07/04/2020]