Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
|Corporate Social Responsibility and Impression Management: The American Arabian Oil Company (Aramco), 1932–1974
|Albalwi, Wedian Mohammed
|The principal aim of this thesis is to contribute towards the understanding of the corporate social responsibility (CSR) policy of the Arabian-American Oil Company (Aramco) in Saudi Arabia. Multinational corporations present a positive image of their economic and social activities to investors and society in order to justify their exploitation of natural resources. Given the importance of CSR activities in the twentieth century, this study examines the role played by CSR programmes in Aramco’s strategy to strengthen its position in the Kingdom. These programmes have contributed to economic and social development, but were also a mechanism used by the company to maintain control of Saudi oil assets. Using Aramco as a case study, contrasts are drawn between the public pronouncements of its management concerning CSR activities and actual events as documented in the literature, official papers and archive records. Furthermore, forty-two management statements in the company reports are analysed to identify and categorise any impression management techniques identified. The findings show that these activities did not stem from a philanthropic rationale but were necessary to enable Aramco to create the infrastructure to find, extract and control oil assets. As a consequence of these activities, racism and discrimination were part of the company’s system of hierarchical control. However, Aramco adopted assertive strategies to present a positive image of itself as a socially responsible company that was contributing to the economic and social development of Saudi Arabia. The adoption of a longitudinal, historical analysis of the interrelationship between CSR activities and impression management strategies provides a rich understanding of how companies seek to present images of themselves in changing economic and political environments. By drawing on evidence from major archive documents, the research contributes theoretical, methodological and data insights. The study extends our theoretical understanding of CSR activities in a historical context. Historians of business and entrepreneurship could provide insights into the development of CSR and how it has been strategically utilised by companies. In terms of methodological contribution, the study presents a novel theoretical lens to investigate the motivations for CSR in the twentieth century using the impression management strategy framework. Third, in terms of data contribution, the unique analysis of 42 historical reports from 1938 to 1974 is conducted with the computer-aided content analysis program DICTION 7.0.
|Ph. D. Thesis
|Appears in Collections:
|Newcastle University Business School
Files in This Item:
|Albalwi Wedian e-copy 140547487.pdf
Items in DSpace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.