MG210      Half Unit
Corporate Social Responsibility and International Labour Standards

This information is for the 2014/15 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Sarah Ashwin NAB 4.19


This course is available on the BSc in Human Resource Management and Employment Relations and BSc in Management. This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit and to General Course students.


Any social science background

Course content

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is becoming an expected element of business strategy. This course critically evaluates CSR from a number of perspectives, drawing on material from a variety of different disciplines. Students analyse the emergence of CSR, its theoretical basis, the business case for the adoption of CSR programmes, as well as the social impacts of such policies. The opening lectures of the course focus on globalisation and international labour standards, and provide an understanding of how CSR relates to international regulatory institutions such as the International Labour Organisation. Subsequent lectures focus on the different aspects of CSR mentioned above, as well as topics such as comparative CSR. In terms of the impact and design of CSR policies, the course mainly focuses on issues relating to labour standards.

As well as traditional academic readings and case studies, students will critically examine publically available material such as corporate policies and reports. Seminars will follow a mixture of formats including group activities and presentations. The course will include one interactive lecture from a CSR professional.


10 hours of lectures and 10 hours of classes in the LT. 1 hour of classes in the ST.

Formative coursework

Students will be expected to produce 1 essay in the LT.

Indicative reading

Locke, R. (2013) The Promise and Limits of Private Power: Promoting Labor Standards in a Global Economy, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.  Vogel, D. (2005) The Market For Virtue: The Potential and Limits of Corporate Social Responsibility, Washington D.C.: Brookings Institution Press. Crane, A. et al. (2008) The Oxford Handbook of Corporate Social Responsibility, Oxford: OUP. Elliot, K.A. and Freeman, R. (2003) Can Labor Standards Improve Under Globalization?, Washington D.C.: Peterson Institute for International Economics.


Exam (60%, duration: 2 hours) in the main exam period.
Essay (40%, 2000 words) in the ST.

Key facts

Department: Management

Total students 2013/14: Unavailable

Average class size 2013/14: Unavailable

Capped 2013/14: No

Lecture capture used 2013/14: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

PDAM skills

  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Communication
  • Commercial awareness

Course survey results

(2012/13 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 62.5%



Reading list (Q2.1)


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