Exploring firm-community level trust in rural Africa through the lens of oil companies’ corporate social responsibilities

Journal article


Meribe, Nnaemeka Chidiebere, Ayentimi, Desmond Tutu, Oke, Benson Reuben and Adonteng-Kissi, Obed. (2021). Exploring firm-community level trust in rural Africa through the lens of oil companies’ corporate social responsibilities. Society and Business Review. 16(3), pp. 357-373. https://doi.org/10.1108/SBR-04-2020-0059
AuthorsMeribe, Nnaemeka Chidiebere, Ayentimi, Desmond Tutu, Oke, Benson Reuben and Adonteng-Kissi, Obed
Abstract

Purpose
This paper aims to explore firm-community level trust in rural Africa through the lens of oil companies’ corporate social responsibilities (CSR).

Design/methodology/approach
This paper is grounded on a case study of local communities and other stakeholders in a Nigerian community exploring the underlying triggers of distrust and trust between oil companies and rural communities through the lens of CSR.

Findings
This exploratory study found the presence of high-level firm-community expectation differentials, pointing to considerable mistrust between local communities and oil companies’ CSR initiatives.

Practical implications
The local communities tend to feel oil companies attempt to secure social licence to operate by engaging in CSR initiatives but not to genuinely improve their welfare. There is, therefore, a superficial effort or incentive for oil companies to engage in CSR initiatives in rural Africa.

Originality/value
The paper highlights the notion that building a community-driven CSR requires a partnership in which local communities share legitimacy with government agencies and oil companies in influencing CSR initiatives. This represents the most effective way of enhancing firm-community level trust and social legitimacy in rural Africa.

Keywordssocial responsibility; stakeholder analysis; corporate social responsibility; trust; oil companies; rural Africa; community level
Year2021
JournalSociety and Business Review
Journal citation16 (3), pp. 357-373
PublisherEmerald Publishing Limited
ISSN1746-5680
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1108/SBR-04-2020-0059
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85101444731
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range357-373
Publisher's version
License
All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online15 Feb 2021
Publication process dates
Accepted12 Nov 2020
Deposited11 Aug 2021
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