Corporate Social Responsibility in Denmark

Kristian Høyer Toft, Jacob Dahl Rendtorff

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Abstract

Denmark presents a country with ambitious policies for corporate socialresponsibility (CSR). This is reflected by the fact that major Danish companies havepromoted the global CSR and sustainability agenda since the 1990s. The Scandina-vian countries in general have succeeded in earning a reputation as global sustain-ability front runners, and Denmark is part of that storyline. The general storyline isabout a transformation from limited understandings of CSR to more comprehensiveconceptions of sustainability that include.To show this development, the chapter provides a review of CSR in Denmarkspanning the last couple of decades with a purview to government initiatives, thesignificance of the industrial foundations, and the impact of the United NationsSustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).First, two examples are presented of how the government has been activelyadvancing CSR, making it mandatory for larger businesses to report on theexpanding agenda on corporate sustainability, and by establishing‘The Mediationand Complaints-Handling Institution for Responsible Business Conduct’in 2012—this is the Danish national OECD contact point.Second, particular to the Danish business tradition are the Danish industrialfoundations. They can be argued to provide favorable conditions for CSR bymeans of corporate governance that includes the long-term interest and the commongood of society.Third, from the launch of the UN SDGs in 2015, the SDGs have been embracedacross all sectors, ranging from the state to major corporations and civil society. TheSDG agenda exemplifies a bottom-up governance approach that adjusts well to theDanish tradition for voluntary engagement in democratic decision-making of civil society. We foresee that the SDGs provide a call for new forms of leadership and management.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCurrent Global Practices of Corporate Social Responsibility : In the Era of Sustainable Development Goals
EditorsSamuel O. Idowu
Number of pages19
PublisherSpringer
Publication date2021
Pages79-97
ISBN (Print)9783030683856
ISBN (Electronic)9783030683863
Publication statusPublished - 2021
SeriesCSR, Sustainability, Ethics & Governance
ISSN2196-7075

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