Corporate sustainability programs and reportingResponsibility commitment and thought leadership at Starbucks

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Book Chapter

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Building upon the thesis of Baden and Harwood (2013) that "terminology matters" in describing sustainability programs and corporate social responsibility reporting efforts, this chapter examines how an organization rhetorically self-defines its specific degree or level of "responsibility" in a particular industry or within an industry sector in its actions as well as its non-financial reporting efforts. Starbucks's evolution in developing sustainability programs and their sustainability reporting over a 12-year period are examined as a case example. Being both praised and criticized, Starbucks provides an instructive example of the evolution of corporate responsibility in a customer-facing enterprise. A model of both internal and external drivers of corporate social responsibility and sustainability progress is proposed and applied to the Starbucks case.



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