This study analyzes how environmental corporate social responsibility (ECSR) strategies contribute to enhancing innovativeness among small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by developing technological resources. We test our hypotheses over an eight-year period using a panel of 2,405 industrial SMEs in Spain. We empirically find that ECSR drives the building of firms’ technological resources, which results in an enhancement of their technological effort or R&D and outcomes in terms of product and process innovation. ECSR intensifies innovation for innovative firms and catalyzes the inception of innovation for previously non-innovating firms, and the resultant effects are sustained over time. We contribute to the literature by analyzing the effects of ECSR in promoting the innovation of firms beyond the well-known influence on green innovation. Further, we examine the neglected research area of the environmental strategies of SMEs. Our findings strengthen the instrumental innovative value of ECSR, specifically for SMEs.
Keywords: Environmental corporate social responsibility; Innovation; Process innovation; Product Innovation; R&D; SMEs; Sustainability
JCR Impact Factor and WoS quartile: 5.846 - Q1 (2019)
DOI reference: 10.1016/j.techfore.2020.120355
Published on paper: January 2021. Published on-line: October 2020.
F.J. Forcadell, F. Úbeda, E. Aracil. Effects of environmental corporate social responsibility on innovativeness of spanish industrial SMEs. Technological Forecasting and Social Change. vol. 162, no. 120355, pp. 1-9, January 2021. [Online: October 2020]