The authors discuss how Chinese environmental non-government organizations (NGOs) can thrive as effective stakeholders through market power. The research is based on extensive literature review, four years’ field work in China, in-depth interviews of twenty-six Chinese business executives coming from seventeen different foreign multinational enterprises, five staff of three national Chinese environmental NGOs, and personal reflections. Chinese environmental NGOs are very localized and embedded in party-state relationships. They always struggle for financial support, credibility from the public and enterprises, and government approval. They are limited to be service providers in a contested space defined by a cautious legal system. Ironically, the Chinese government and foreign multinationals (MNEs), not the Chinese environmental NGOs, are the key actors in the corporate social responsibility (CSR) movement in China. The authors argue that the Chinese environmental NGOs must use leverage on their unique resources and strengthen their capacity through participating and learning in some available corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs. The basic strategy for the Chinese environmental NGOs is to increase their networking with corporations, government-owned non-government organizations, and international non-government organizations in selected environmental projects in China. When foreign MNEs are committed to provide opportunities for the Chinese environmental NGOs to be potential partners, these corporations will perform much better in a global market economy. The success of corporate social responsibility movement initiated by the Chinese government will be attained when there are balanced relationships among the Chinese government, local Chinese environmental NGOs, and corporations. When the capacity of the Chinese environmental NGOs is strengthened, the charity and stewardship principles of the CSR movement will be implemented.
|Keywords:||Chinese Environmental Non-government Organizations, Corporate Social Responsibility, Corporate Social Movement, Multinational Corporations, China, Environmental Issues, Movement|
Associate Professor, Business Administration, Malone University, Canton, Ohio, USA
Hong Kong, China
Researcher, Hong Kong, China
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