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The collapse of ENRON, a classic case of corporate social irresponsibility


  • PETRACHE Ana-Maria

    () (The Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies, Romania)


Corporate Social Responsibility is an issue that is working its way into many policy debates and corporate agendas. The definition of corporate social responsibility has undergone substantial modifications over time and it is still evolving along with society and society’s expectations. There is no globally accepted definition of CSR, nor is there a consensus on a definitive list of the issues it encompasses. It is generally agreed that CSR is neither corporate philanthropy nor strict compliance with the law. However, we can easily identify “events” which doesn’t fit in the CSR framework. The collapse of energy broker Enron Corp. has been described as the biggest business surprise of the past 10 years. It was a surprise which unexpectedly left 20000 employees in a deeply compromised safety of their pension funds. The concept of CSR is underpinned by the idea that corporations can no longer act as isolated economic entities operating in detachment from broader society. Traditional views about competitiveness, survival and profitability are being swept away. The increasingly negative and very pervasive impact of global corporations in all aspects of social life and in the environment has been the catalyst in the emergence of a diversity of stakeholders demanding accountability about the impact of corporate activity in the whole aspects of its influence.

Suggested Citation

  • PETRACHE Ana-Maria, 2009. "The collapse of ENRON, a classic case of corporate social irresponsibility," Economia. Seria Management, Faculty of Management, Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest, Romania, vol. 12(2 Special), pages 51-57, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:rom:econmn:v:12:y:2009:i:2special:p:51-57

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    corporate social responsibility; irresponsibility; ethical leadership; Enron;

    JEL classification:

    • M14 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - Corporate Culture; Diversity; Social Responsibility
    • K22 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Business and Securities Law


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