Departmental Bulletin Paper Corporate Social Responsibility in Malaysia:A Conceptual Framework for Measuring Performances

Yazreen MdYusoff, Irma  ,  Lau, Sim Yee

The topic on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has attracted attention all around the world. The law of nature has made its importance more prominent forcing nations to strive in maintaining sustainability. Aware of its importance, Malaysia has followed suit with other countries in its attempt to promote CSR by imposing a regulation for all public listed companies to document their CSR activities. However, since its implementation in 2007, very few companies have taken CSR seriously and they have merely reported their CSR activities in order to fulfill the requirement rather than to proactively contribute their efforts in CSR. As reported by GRI (2012), only a few companies in Malaysia have taken the liberty to go beyond the requirement. This paper intends to identify the extent and emphasis of Corporate Social Responsibility Reporting in the top 100 public listed companies in the main board of Bursa Malaysia and to assess the number of companies that abides to any existing CSR Reporting Guidelines such as GRI, Dow Jones Sustainability Index, the ISO 26000 Guidance Standard on Social Responsibility, etc. It also examines the relationship between the level of disclosure and the nature of the company for the year 2012. These companies are divided into sectors such as Construction, Finance, Trading and Services, Industrial Product, Plantation, Infrastructure Project Companies, Consumer, Properties, Real Estate and Technology. This study uses content analysis method to measure the level of CSR reporting in Annual Reports of the top 100 companies. Empirical findings show that only 12 companies published a standalone CSR or Sustainability Report each (6 follow the GRI and 1 DJSI guidelines), 7 published the excerpt of their CSR section from their Annual Report as a standalone report each; 79 reports of CSR in a sectionof each respective Annual Report (2 follow GRI and 1 DJSI Guidelines) while 2 did not report any CSR activities. Based on the four major quadrants of CSR activities, i.e., community, environment, marketplace, and workplace, analytical results derive the following trend. Majority (i. e., 91.2%) of the top 100 companies in Malaysia have focused on community related activities, which was followed by environmental related activities (85. 1%), workplace related activities (78. 7%) and marketplace related activities (64.9%). Based on the word count analysis of the CSR reporting, this analysis shows that companies tend to publicize more on community related activities compared to workplace and environment, but they gave less emphasis on market place.

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