Enhancing the role of human resource management in corporate sustainability and social responsibility: A multi-stakeholder, multidimensional approach to HRM

Günter Stahl, Chris Brewster, David Collings, Aida Hajro

Publication: Scientific journalJournal articlepeer-review


This paper focuses on the increased pressure for corporations to engage in corporate sustainability (CS) and corporate social responsibility (CSR) in order to address the current crisis of confidence in business, align their activities with the needs and expectations of a broader set of stakeholders, and help tackle the world's grand challenges. We argue that human resource management (HRM) has a potentially vital role to play in contributing to a firm's CS/CSR efforts, but so far has failed to deliver. We explore the reasons for this failure and discuss ways for HRM to play a more prominent role in the design and implementation of a firm's CS/CSR strategy. Building on earlier attempts to integrate corporate responsibility and sustainability into the HRM performance construct, we propose a multidimensional, multi-stakeholder approach to sustainable HRM that encompasses activities aimed both at avoiding harmful consequences for stakeholders and contributing to positive outcomes along the triple bottom line (i.e., people, planet, and prosperity). We discuss implications for research and develop a set of propositions and guidelines for future research.
Original languageEnglish
JournalHuman Resource Management Review
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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