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Business and Society Review 108:3 339 – 364 Blackwell Oxford, Business BASR © 0 1 3 108 2003 Original BUSINESS HILL, 00 2003 STEPHENS, Center UK Article and Publishing AND Society forSOCIETY Business AND Ltd Review SMITH REVIEW Ethics at Bentley College Corporate Social Responsibility: An Examination of Individual Firm Behavior RONALD PAUL HILL, DEBRA STEPHENS, AND IAIN SMITH For many people, integrity and self-respect are basic values. They are absolute needs open to no negotiation. Beyond material goods lies an inner sense of what is good. Beyond calculation lies judgment. Indeed, is this not the essence of responsible management? To judge the difference between short-term calculable gains and deeply rooted core values?1 S everal generations of business students have been educated under the assumption that the primary duty of a public organization’s management is to maximize stockholder wealth by increasing the value of its common stock.2 According to leading finance scholars, this emphasis resulted in the widespread use of employee compensation packages that tie incentives such as bonuses to stock performance. Nonetheless, an essential question remains: “How do we balance social concerns against the need to create value for our shareholders?”3 This question has become urgent in the wake of recent business scandals that have shaken public confidence in corporate America,4 and convinced many Americans that top managers have enriched Ronald Paul Hill is the ...
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