Hochschule Konstanz Technik, Wirtschaft und Gestaltung (HTWG), Konstanz Institut für WerteManagement (KieM), Konstanz
The focus of this part of the research project lies on the process of developing a Social Responsibility Standard within a network made up of various stakeholders. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is known as the world´s leading institution for the development of standards. Besides setting standards in the fields of e.g. construction, agriculture and information technology, recently the Technical Management Board (TMB) of ISO proposed to further extend its activities by developing an international standard addressing the social responsibility of organizations. In 2004, a new Working Group was established as a multi-stakeholder group comprised of experts, who are nominated by ISO´s members as well as interested international and regional organizations in order to provide for guidance in setting international standards on social responsibility. In May 2006, the survey was conducted during the third conference of the ISO Working Group in Lisbon, Portugal. This particular empirical study has been designed on the one hand to investigate the motivation of organizations and their delegates to engage in social responsibility. On the other hand, the survey had the objective to evaluate the individual participants' current perception and assessment of the network´s efficiency, effectiveness and legitimacy, a so-called 'snap-shot' of this ISO process1. Overall, the empirical study shows that the organizations and their delegates, who have dealt with the topic SR for several years for diverse reasons, expect a tremendous effect by implementing ISO 26000 in their own organizations. Furthermore, the majority of respondents assess the decision-making process positively within the ISO process with respect to the criteria inclusive, fair, capacity building, legitimate and transparent. Difficulties concerning the distribution of stakeholder influences are being addressed. The results of the survey support the efforts to establish policies and procedures in order to encourage a balanced representation of stakeholders in terms of gender, geographic and stakeholder groups.