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Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society

Volume 24, 2013

Proceedings of the Twenty-Fourth Annual Meeting

Caddie Putnam Rankin, Harry J. Van Buren III
Pages 59-69

The Professionalization Continuum
The Expanding CSR Function

In this paper, we investigate the factors that predict professionalization of organizational occupations in order to (1) predict how the CSR function might evolve in ways that move it closer to a well-defined profession and (2) assess why moving toward professionalization might make the CSR function more effective within organizations. We use our historical analysis to make research propositions as to which elements of professionalization are most important in promoting ethical behavior. We also discuss whether we believe a path exists for the CSR function to move along the professionalization continuum from less established to well established in ways that promotes the function’s effectiveness.

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