Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)


  • The primary objective of this project is to promote the advancement of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and related CSR best practices in Hong Kong. This joint pilot study between The Hong Kong Council of Social Service (HKCSS) and The University of Hong Kong (HKU) aims to investigate the current level of CSR performance, thereby setting a benchmark for Hong Kong, of a sample of publicly listed companies that are part of the HKCSS Caring Company Scheme.

Principal Investigator

  • Professor Cecilia Chan, Department of Social Work and Social Administration


  • The Hong Kong Council of Social Service


The HKU team, with input from the HKCSS team, has created a survey questionnaire based on those global CSR guidelines as set forth in ISO 26000 and the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) in addition to the major international sustainability indices such as the DOW Jones Sustainability Index and FTSE4Good as well as local ones such as Oxfam/Hang Seng and HKQAA/HSBC. The principles of social responsibility under ISO 26000 include accountability, transparency, ethical behavior, respect for stakeholder interests, respect for rule of law and respect for international norms of behavior, and state that:

“When approaching and practicing social responsibility, the overarching objective for an organization is to maximize its contribution to sustainable development. Organizations should base their behavior on standards, guidelines or rules of conduct that are in accordance with accepted principles of right or good conduct in the context of specific situations, even when these situations are challenging. In applying this International Standard it is advisable that an organization take into consideration societal, environmental, legal, cultural, political and organizational diversity, as well as differences in economic conditions, while being consistent with international norms of behavior.” The survey consists of 46 questions across 9 areas as follows: CSR strategy, organizational governance, human rights, labour practices, the environment, fair operating practices, consumer issues, community involvement and development and CSR impact measurement.

Project Outcome   

The survey questionnaire, based on ISO 26000 guidelines, was pilot tested with a sample of 17 major Hong Kong corporations selected by HKCSS. The companies represent a range of industries and are all members of the HKCSS Caring Company Scheme. The pilot test included in-person interviews with 12 of the companies and results of the survey and interviews were reported to HKCSS. The results have been communicated to the participating companies at a formal event in June 2013. These results provide a clear snapshot of where CSR engagement stands in Hong Kong and highlights those areas of CSR on which to focus future efforts.

CSR Report Executive Summary

ExCEL3 Coordinators: Dr Wang Xiao Lu