The effect of corporate social responsibility on firm's foreign direct investement

  • Mei Liu

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


This thesis examines the relation between corporate social responsibility and firm's foreign direct investment decisions. Three empirical chapters focusing on the different aspects of the relation are investigated. I begin the analysis by examining whether there is a positive relation between corporate social responsibility and firm's overall foreign direct investment propensity. I find that corporate social responsibility can help firms to overcome the liability of foreignness, thus increase their likelihood of undertaking foreign direct investment. The thesis then focuses on the influence of corporate social responsibility on multinational enterprises' foreign investment location and entry mode choices. I find that multinational enterprises with high corporate social responsibility performance have higher likelihood to invest in a developed rather than a developing country, and to choose a full rather than a partial control entry method. I further find that the relation above are affected by the level of liability of foreignness multinational enterprises encountered and the institutional qualities of the host country. The final part of the empirical analysis examines whether corporate social responsibility can create value for shareholders around the foreign direct investment announcements. I find a neutral relation between corporate social responsibility and firm's three day, five day, and 11 day cumulative abnormal returns, thus in general corporate social responsibility cannot create value for shareholders in the short term. However, I identify several occasions where a positive relation exists. That is when the investment is in developing countries, or through a partial control entry method, or the investing firm encounters a high level of liability of foreignness. This thesis contributes both to academic literature and practice by examining the various impact of corporate social responsibility on firm's foreign investment decisions. Evidence is provided on the important role corporate social responsibility plays on firm's foreign investment decision making process.
Date of Award5 Nov 2018
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University Of Strathclyde
SupervisorPatrick McColgan (Supervisor) & Andrew Marshall (Supervisor)

Cite this