Customer attribution toward corporate social responsibility: the importance of social justice in COVID-19 donation

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Literature on corporate social responsibility (CSR) has given much attention to the impact of CSR initiatives on business performance. However, managing customers’ attributions to the company’s social activities are also needed. This study aims to extend the existing knowledge by examining the role of social justice as a moderating variable in the relationships among corporate brand image, CSR motive, corporate brand trust and loyalty. Design/methodology/approach: The research data were collected from a sample of 710 respondents in Indonesia through an online survey. The variables used in this study’s questionnaire were adapted from previous studies. The focus of the survey was a COVID-19-related social activity conducted by the biggest private telecommunication company in Indonesia. Structural equation modeling was used to analyze the data and test the hypotheses. Findings: The results showed that social justice moderated the relationship between corporate brand image and CSR motive. Also, social justice that revealed fairness in social life could influence how customers respond on company social activities and thus create corporate brand trust and loyalty. Research limitations/implications: This study focused on only one company and one type of CSR activity (i.e. philanthropy) that might limit its generalizability. Future studies can focus on other types of CSR activities from various companies and industries. Practical implications: In designing their social activities, companies must consider the importance of social justice. Companies need to address customers’ concerns toward social and society problems, especially to overcome social, environmental or health problems. Hereinafter, companies must design CSR activities that establish and accentuate their value motives by creating communication through media and public relations activities to symbolize their high concern for social problems or disasters. Originality/value: Most previous studies consider the outcome of social activities and their impact on business performance. This study focuses on the impact of corporate brand image and social justice (as an individual characteristics) on CSR (social activities) and how it can further enhance business performance (corporate brand trust, corporate brand image, loyalty) and enrich CSR research in emerging economies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1172-1187
Number of pages16
JournalSocial Responsibility Journal
Issue number6
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021


  • Corporate brand image
  • Corporate brand trust
  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Loyalty
  • Social justice


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