Corporate social responsibility and innovation: a comparative study

H. Zhou (First Author), Xiande Zhao (Participant Author), Q. Wang (Participant Author)

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal

30 Citations (Web of Science)


The purpose of this study was to examine how firms' corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategies affect their innovation performance via two mediating variables, employee involvement and supplier collaboration, and compare how this mechanism works in the service and manufacturing industries. By analyzing and validating the direct and indirect effects of CSR on innovation performance in both the service and manufacturing industries, this study addressed the strategic benefit of CSR and extended research focused on the financial benefits of CSR. Therefore, its findings contribute to our understanding of sustainability and innovation issues. From a theoretical perspective, this study extended the RBV, SDL and stakeholder theory to the context of the CSR-innovation relationship, and showed that firms could align CSR and innovation initiatives to achieve strategic synergy. It also revealed the similarities and differences between service and manufacturing firms regarding the mechanism through which CSR affects innovation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)863-882
JournalIndustrial Management & Data Systems
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Corresponding author email


  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Manufacturing innovation
  • Resource-based view
  • Service innovation
  • Service-dominant logic
  • Stakeholder theory

Indexed by

  • ABDC-A
  • Scopus
  • SSCI


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