Firm Performance, Business Environment, and Outlook for Social and Environmental Responsibility during the Economic Downturn: Findings and Implications from the Forest Sector Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/articles/3484zj70k

This is an author's peer-reviewed final manuscript, as accepted by the publisher. The published article is copyrighted by NRC Research Press and can be found at:  http://www.nrcresearchpress.com/journal/cjfr.

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  • The recent economic downturn severely affected the US forest sector from a macro-economic perspective but little is known about changes in firm-level performance. In this study we investigate the changes in financial, social and environmental performance of forest sector firms during a period approximately corresponding to the downturn. We also assess industry dynamism and industry’s view about social and environmental responsibility as a competitive tool. We conducted a national survey of wood, furniture and paper companies. Approximately sixty percent of our respondents reported a decline in financial performance during the downturn. With respect to social and environmental performance, customer oriented actions show mixed trends, employee matters remained somewhat unaltered, community engagement significantly decreased, and engagement in environmental activities significantly increased. Respondents view their operating business environment as highly dynamic and difficult and they do not view engagement in social and environmental responsibility activities leading to either financial or non-financial benefits.
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  • Hansen, E., Nybakk, E., & Panwar, R. (2013). Firm performance, business environment, and outlook for social and environmental responsibility during the economic downturn: Findings and implications from the forest sector. Canadian Journal of Forest Research/Revue Canadienne De Recherche Forestiere, 43(12), 1137-1144. doi:10.1139/cjfr-2013-0215
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