An Insight into Determinants of Corporate Social Responsibility Decoupling: Evidence from Pakistan


  • Sana Malik MS Scholar, International Islamic University, Islamabad, Pakistan
  • Sumayya Chughtai Assistant Professor, International Islamic University, Islamabad
  • Kausar Fiaz Khawaja Assistant Professor, International Islamic University, Islamabad, Pakistan


Corporate social responsibility decoupling, institutional theory, stakeholder theory, coercive isomorphism


The study aims to examine what causes firms to engage in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Decoupling. It also highlights the intensity of the firms to be involved in the decoupling of firms’ actual from claimed CSR practices. The study hypothesizes a significant association between CSR decoupling and its various antecedents. The documented antecedents are coercive isomorphism, monitoring mechanism, firm reputation, resource slack, and firm advertising intensity. Based on Institutional Theory and Stakeholder Theory, the present study accounts for the gap between firms’ actual CSR efforts and its professed CSR while also highlighting the factors and conditions under which firms overstate and misrepresent their CSR activities. The sample of the study includes 200 non-financial Pakistani firms listed on Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) with a time frame ranging from 2010 to 2018. The model under study is tested using common effects regression. The study findings reveal that non-financial firms operating in Pakistan are highly engaged in CSR decoupling. Also, coercive isomorphism, monitoring mechanisms, and firm reputation are significantly associated with CSR decoupling.