Evaluating the Role of Corporate Social Responsibility, Crisis Type, and Image Repair Mechanisms on Crisis Recovery
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- Master of Science 
No company is immune to being faced with a crisis. The crises unfold fast, with unpredictable outcomes for brand reputation and consumer perception. Having appropriate crisis response plans in place is therefore crucial for organizations to ensure its survival after a crisis. The literature review identifies several topics of interest related to crisis management and corporate social responsibility (CSR), including the importance of appropriate response mechanisms after a crisis, CSR in companies’ communication efforts, various types of crises, and relevant image repairing mechanisms. Through an online experiment (N=305), participants were exposed to a fictional company undergoing a crisis, and one of five image repairing mechanisms. Participants were also assigned to a stimulus that included priming of CSR behaviors, or the control group that had no mention of CSR activities, resulting in a total of 10 possible conditions. The data was tested using paired samples t-test, independent samples t-test, and one-way ANOVA. The results show that corrective action and evasion of responsibility are the most effective mechanisms to use as these have a successful outcome in terms of perception of the company. The study also establishes that consumers who are exposed to CSR activities will have significantly higher perception of the company than those that are not exposed to CSR activities, but that CSR will have little to no effect on perception after a crisis occurs.
Masteroppgave(MSc) in Master of Science in Strategic Marketing Management - Handelshøyskolen BI, 2021