Do Dutch consumers prefer local CSR above foreign CSR? Differences in consumers’ intent to purchase from brands executing CSR initiatives

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Stakeholders nowadays expect brands to actively perform Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives. Due to globalization these CSR initiatives are executed across the world, but research investigating how geographical factors regarding CSR impact consumer behavior is rare. This paper therefore built further upon Russell and Russell (2010) to examine whether consumers would respond more positive to local CSR initiatives compared to foreign ones, and what the role of the brand is in this relationship. A 2x2 between subject experiment was conducted among 505 participants within the Dutch consumer market. Various regression analyses indicated that local CSR initiatives of a local brand led to the highest intent to purchase among Dutch consumers, compared to a local brand performing a foreign CSR initiative, a global brand performing a foreign CSR initiative and a global brand performing a local CSR initiative. Brand scope appeared to be a stronger predictor of consumer behavior than the geographical CSR location. Brand familiarity and brand attitude in addition positively influenced the intent to purchase. Opposed from expectations, the global identity of Dutch consumers did not influence the preference for localness. This study allows Dutch brands to make decisions regarding the execution of their CSR program.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen