Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-78dcdb465f-hcvhd Total loading time: 0.368 Render date: 2021-04-17T22:45:57.543Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": false, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true }

Social License and Environmental Protection: Why Businesses Go Beyond Compliance

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 December 2018

Abstract

This article examines the concept of the corporate “social license,” which governs the extent to which a corporation is constrained to meet societal expectations and avoid activities that societies (or influential elements within them) deem unacceptable, whether or not those expectations are embodied in law. It examines the social license empirically, as it relates to one social problem–environmental protection–and as it relates to one particular industry: pulp and paper manufacturing. It shows try the social license is important, the circumstances in which it may encourage companies to go “beyond compliance” with regulation, how its terms are monitored and enforced, and how it interacts with what we term the regulatory and economic licenses. Overall, this research demonstrates that corporate environmental behavior cannot be explained purely in terms of instrumental threats and moral obligations to comply with the law, and that the increasing incidence of “beyond compliance” corporate behavior can be better explained in terms of the interplay between social pressures and economic constraints.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © American Bar Foundation, 2004 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below.

References

Asfah, S., and Vincent, T. 1997. Putting Pressure on Polluters: Indonesia's PROPER Program. Harvard Institute for International Development. http://www.worldbank.org/nipr/workpaper/Vincent.Google Scholar
Bandyopadhyay, S., and Horowitz, J. D. Forthcoming. Randomness in Point-Source Water Pollution: Evidence and Implications. Baylis, R., L. Connell, and A. Flynn. 1998. Sector Variation and Ecological Modernization: Towards An Analysis at the Level of the Firm. Business Strategy and the Environment 7: 150–61.3.0.CO;2-J>CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Becker, Gary. 1968. Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach. Journal of Political Economy 76: 169217.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cohen, Mark A. 2001. Information as a Policy Instrument in Protecting the Environment: What Have We Learned Environmental Reporter 32:10425–431.Google Scholar
Connor, Tim, and Atkinson, Jeff. 1996. Sweating for Nike: A Report on Labour Conditions in the Sport Shoe Industry. Oxfam Community Aid Abroad Briefing Paper, No. 16. http://www.caa.org.au/campaigns/nike/sweat2.html.Google Scholar
Davy, B. 1997. Essential Injustice. New York: Springer 1997.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Florida, R., Atlas, M., and Cline, M. 1999. What Makes Companies Green? Paper presented to the 95th Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers, Hawaii, March.Google Scholar
Foster, S. 1998. Justice from the Ground Up: Distributive Inequities, Grassroots Resistance, and the Transformative Politics of the Environmental Justice Movement. Californian Law Review 86:775841.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fung, A., Karkkainen, B., and Sabel, C. 1998. After Backyard Environmentalism: Towards a New Model of Information-Based Environmental Regulation. Paper prepared for Conference on Information-Based Environmental Regulation, Columbia University, New York.Google Scholar
Ghobadian, A., Viney, H., Lui, J., and James, P. 1998. Extending Linear Approaches to Mapping Corporate Environmental Behaviour. Business Strategy and the Environment 7:1323.3.0.CO;2-D>CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Greening, D., and Gray, B. 1994. Testing a Model of Organizational Response to Social and Political Issues. Academy of Management Journal 37 (3):467–98.Google Scholar
Cunningham, Neil. 1987. Negotiated Non-compliance: A Case Study of Regulatory Failure. Law and Policy 9 (1):6991.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cunningham, Neil, Kagan, Robert A., and Thornton, Dorothy. 2003. Shades of Green: Business, Regulation, and Environment. Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
Gunningham, Neil, and Sinclair, D. 2002. Leaders and Laggards: Next Generation Environment Protection. Sheffield, U.K.: Greenleaf.Google Scholar
Hawkins, K., and Hutter, B. 1993. The Response of Business to Social Regulation in England and Wales. Law and Policy 15:199218.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hoffman, A. 1997. From Heresy to Dogma: An Institutional History of Corporate Environmentalism. Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
Joyce, S., and Thomson, I. 1999. Earning a Social License to Operate: Social Acceptability and Resource Development in Latin America. Mining Journal, 11 June, 441.Google Scholar
Kagan, R, Gunningham, N., and Thornton, D. 2003. Explaining Corporate Environmental Performance: How Does Regulation Matter Law and Society Review 37:5190.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Knickerbocker, Brad. 1994. Making Paper Safer for the Environment. Christian Science Monitor , 12 April.Google Scholar
Lazarus, R. J., and Tai, S. 1999. Integrating Environmental Justice into EPA Permitting Authority. Ecology Law Quarterly 26:617–78.Google Scholar
Magat, Wesley, and Viscusi, W. Kip. 1990. Effectiveness of the EPA's Regulatory Enforcement: The Case of Industrial Effluent Standards. Journal of Law and Economics 33:331–60.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
McClelland, J. D., and Horowitz, J. K. 1999. The Costs of Water Pollution Regulation in the U.S. Pulp and Paper Industry. Land Economics 75(2):220–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Miller, J. L., and Anderson, A. B. 1986. Updating the Deterrence Doctrine. Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology 77:418–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Moore, Julia. 2001. Frankenfood or Doubly Green Revolution: Europe vs. America on the GMO debate. In AAAS Science and Technology Policy Yearbook, ed. Teich, A. H., Nelson, S. D., McEnaney, C., and Lita, S. J. Washington, D.C.: American Association for the Advancement of Science, http://www.aaas.org/spp/rd/chl4.pdf.Google Scholar
Morag-Levine, Noga. 1994- Between Choice and Sacrifice: Constructions of Community Consent in Reactive Air Pollution Regulation. Law and Society Review 28:1035–77.Google Scholar
Nash, J. 2000. Voluntary Codes of Practice: Non-Governmental Institutions for promoting Environmental Management in Firms. Paper given at National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council Workshop on Education Information and Voluntary Measures in Environmental Protection Washington, D.C., November.Google Scholar
Neale, A. 1997. Organizational Learning in Contested Environments: Lessons from Brent Spar. Business Strategy and Environment 6:93103.3.0.CO;2-U>CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Norbert-Bohm, Vicki, and Rossi, Mark. 1998. The Power of Incrementalism: Environmental Regulation and Technological Change in Pulp and Paper Bleaching in the U.S. Technology Analysis and Strategic Management 10:225–41.Google Scholar
Porter, M. and Van der Linde, C. 1995. Green and Competitive: Ending the Stalemate. Harvard Business Review 73:120–34.Google Scholar
Prakash, A. 2000. Greening the Firm: The Politics of Corporate Environmentalism. Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Regens, James L., Seldon, Barry J., and Elliott, Euel. 1997. Modeling Compliance to Environmental Regulation: Evidence from Manufacturing Industries. Journal of Policy Modeling 19(6):683–96.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Reinhardt, F. 2000. Down to Earth. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard Business Press.Google Scholar
Sonnenfeld, David A. 2002. Social Movements and Ecological Modernization: The Transformation of Pulp and Paper Manufacturing. Development and Change 33(1):127.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Stanley, E. 1999. Available Environmental Data for Deterrence Research. Presentation by EPA Office of Compliance at Forum on Deterrence of Environmental Violations and Environmental Crimes, National Institute of Justice Washington, D.C., 12 July.Google Scholar
Stigler, George. 1970. The Optimum Enforcement of Laws. Journal of Political Economy 78:526–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Van Yoder, Steven. 2001. Beware the Coming Corporate Backlash. Industry Week, 2 April, 3842.Google Scholar
Wright, M. 1998. Factors Motivating Proactive Health and Safety Management. Contract Research Report prepared by Entec U.K. Ltd. for the Health and Safety Executive London, Her Majesty's Stationery Office.Google Scholar
Yosie, T., and Herbst, T. 1997. The Journey Towards Corporate Environmental Excellence: Integrating Business Methods with Environmental Management. Center for Strategic and International Studies, http://www.csis.org/e4e/yosierpt.html.Google Scholar
Young, J. 1993. Louisiana-Pacific's Samoa Mill Establishes TCF Pulp Production. Pulp and Paper 67:6163.Google Scholar

Full text views

Full text views reflects PDF downloads, PDFs sent to Google Drive, Dropbox and Kindle and HTML full text views.

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 37 *
View data table for this chart

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 27th December 2018 - 17th April 2021. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Social License and Environmental Protection: Why Businesses Go Beyond Compliance
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Social License and Environmental Protection: Why Businesses Go Beyond Compliance
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Social License and Environmental Protection: Why Businesses Go Beyond Compliance
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response


Your details


Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *