Career Opportunities in Corporate Responsibility
“Corporate Social Responsibility” emerged in the 1990’s as a new buzz in the business world, and since then has developed into a field with substantial and diverse career opportunities. The term ‘corporate social responsibility’ or CSR has been coined to define how companies behave in social, environmental and ethical contexts. Corporate social responsibility is about integrating the issues of the workplace, the community and the marketplace into core business strategies. Driving this emerging field are customers who choose products with a good reputation, investors who put money into a company with an exemplary record and firms which invest in the future or training of their employees, and in employers interested in mutually beneficial relationships with local communities.
Career opportunities in CSR reflect the diversity of the field and incorporate the private, public, and non-profit sectors.
There is no such thing as a typical career path in CSR. A career in this field could start in big business, working in the compliance department of a firm such as Levi Strauss, and continue in the public sector, designing government policy, and go onto a niche consulting company providing CSR client services.
There are no prerequisite qualifications to enter in this field. Because the field itself is so new, direct experience in the sector is less important than it might be in some other professions. Rather, transferable skills and knowledge is valued.
Academia and Research
- Harvard Business School, Social Enterprise Initiative http://www.hbs.edu/socialenterprise/
- Boston College, Center for Corporate Citizenship - http://www.bcccc.net/
- KLD Research Analytics, Inc http://www.kld.com/
- Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) http://www.bsr.org
- Business Leaders’ Forum (IBLF) http://www.iblf.org/
- Human Rights Business Institute (Denmark) http://www.humanrightsbusiness.org
- Net Impact - http://www.netimpact.org/
- The Women's Network for a Sustainable Future (WNSF) http://www.wnsf.org/
- AccountAbility http://www.accountability.org.uk/
- SustainAbility http://www.sustainability.com/
- PricewaterhouseCoopers http://www.pwcglobal.com/
- Development Alternatives Inc. http://www.dai.com/
- Foundation Strategy Group http://www.fsg.org/default.aspx
- Ellen Weinreb Social Responsibility Consulting http://www.ellenweinreb.com
- Alternative Consulting http://www.altconsulting.org
- LUCITÀ http://www.lucita.net
- WSP Environmental Inc. http://www.wspgroup.com/
- Fresh Marketing http://www.freshmarketing.com/
- The Corporate Citizenship Company http://www.corporate-citizenship.co.uk/
- Exxon Mobil http://www.exxonmobil.com/corporate/
- Hewlett Packard http://www.hp.com/
- Reebok International http://www.rbk.com/index.asp
- Home Depot http://www.homedepot.com/
- Polo Ralph Lauren Corp http://www.polo.com/home/index.jsp
- Starbucks Coffee Company http://www.starbucks.com/
- Procter & Gamble http://www.pg.com/en_US/index.jhtml
- Cisco Systems http://www.cisco.com/
- The Gap http://www.gapinc.com
- Timberland http://www.timberland.com/home/index.jsp
- Baker McKenzie http://www.bakernet.com/BakerNet/default.htm
- Verite Inc. http://www.verite.org/
- Rainforest Alliance http://www.ra.org/
- Amnesty International http://www.amnesty.org/
- CSR Europe http://www.csreurope.org/
- U.S. Chamber of Commerce Center for Corporate Citizenship (CCC) - http://www.uschamber.com/bclc/default
Socially Responsible Investing
- AccountAbility http://www.accountability.org.uk/
- Ethical Investment Research Services (EIRIS) http://www.eiris.org/
- SocialFunds.com http://www.socialfunds.com/
- Calvert Group http://www.Calvertgroup.com
- The Conservation Company http://www.tccgrp.com/
- Acumen Fund http://www.acumenfund.org
- Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals http://strategic-alliances.org - ASAP serves those who manage strategic alliances in the modern enterprise.
- Boston College's Center for Corporate Citizenship http://www.bcccc.net/ - features job postings in CSR.
- Business Ethics Magazine http://www.business-ethics.com/
- Business for Social Responsibility http://www.bsr.org/jobs/csr/index.cfm - helps companies achieve success and demonstrate respect for ethical values; its job listings are from the organization's member companies in the private, non-profit and public sectors.
- CSR Chicks - students interested in CSR jobs can also subscribe to firstname.lastname@example.org, a listserv that circulates job postings in this field. CSR Chicks is a network of professional women (U.K. based) working in the field of corporate social responsibility.
- CSR Europe http://www.csreurope.org is a non-profit organization that helps companies combine corporate social responsibility and business practice. It provides CSR job listings in the US and Europe at private and non-profit firms.
- CSRwire http://www.csrwire.com corporate responsibility newswire service
- Ellen Weinreb Social Responsibility Consulting http://www.ellenweinreb.com/resources.htm - has a fantastic list of links for CSR jobs
- Ethical Corporation http://www.ethicalcorp.com provides business information about corporate social, financial and environmental responsibility, and links to CSR job and internship listings at private and non-profit firms around the world.
- Good Money http://www.goodmoney.com/jobs.htm provides investment handbooks on companies with socially responsible records; the firm posts private-sector corporate responsibility job announcements on its website.
- Idealist.org http://www.idealist.org
- Net Impact: New Leaders for Better Business http://www.net-impact.org
- Oxford HR www.oxfordhr.co.uk –is a consultancy that helps agencies recruit for management and specialist posts in the areas of development aid, emergency relief, environmental conservation and ethical business.
- Starting Bloc (for undergraduates, but sponsors many events) http://www.startingbloc.org
- Sustainability Practice Network (SPN) http://www.sustainabilitypractice.net/ - A NYC-based forum for professionals working with corporate responsibility and sustainability issues to build a community based on learning, discussion, information and idea exchange.
Edited for the use of SPEA students by the staff of the Office of Career Services. Written by Career Directors from the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs. Information obtained from the Maxwell School of Public Administration.