The Iron Law of Social Responsibility indicates that “society grants legitimacy and power to
business. In the long run, those who do not use power in a manner which society considers
responsible will lose” (Davis, 1973, p. 314). This is why Carroll (1979) notes that it is business
leaders who are responsible in deciding which domains of CSR a company will integrate.
Therefore, it is the company which is responsible for its decisions and impacts on societal well-
being. As Uddin et al. (2008, p. 205) note, this shows “social responsibility being accountable
for the social affects the company has on people—even indirectly.” Thus, Thiel (2015) notes
how social responsibility has developed with businesses managing societal responsibility
expectations, leaving social responsibility the obligation of corporations instead of society.
This has resulted in four knowledge gaps.
Define and describe the four social responsibility knowledge gaps in CSR and sustainability, and
give an example of each.
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