COMMERCE 7016OL Corporate Social Responsibility And Ethics

Table of Contents


Discuss the ethics and corporate social responsibility for Coca-Cola.



This report aims to explain the concepts of corporate social responsibilities, sustainable development, and ethical business operations.

This report will focus on the Coca-Cola case and the unethical business practices that led to the company being severely criticized for its business operations.

The report will also reveal which ethical principles were violated by Coca-Cola’s unethical business practices.

The company has taken significant steps to rebuild its image.

Coca-Cola Criticism and Corporate Social Responsibility

Corporate social responsibility (CSR), is an approach that encourages organisations to become more aware of the impact of their businesses on the environment, stakeholders, and society.

It states that business organizations have a moral responsibility to help the society and take part in activities that aid in the development of the people (Lindgreen & Swaen, 2010).

Another approach taken by organisations is sustainable development. This allows them to meet the current generation’s needs without having any negative impact on the future generations.

This practice ensures that there is no shortage of resources for future generations (Dobson 2007).

CSR is about evaluating the past activities of organisations. Sustainable development, however, focuses on the future and how all strategies will be used.

There is a connection between them both. If an organisation adopts sustainable practices, it will undoubtedly help society and the environment, and this will lead to effective CSR practices (Moon 2007, 2007).

Coca-Cola’s unethical business practices

Coca-Cola is a well-known and respected company.

The company is not only well-known as a global MNC but also for its scandals.

Some of the company’s business practices have been criticized for having a negative impact on society, individuals and the environment. This is contrary to ethical business practices.

Its business operations that cause water shortages in India’s villages and districts is one example of an unethical business practice by Coca-Cola (Srikant n.d.).

Plachimada in Palakkad, Kerala, was the site of a Coca-Cola plant. (Righttowater. n.d.).

Two years later, local communities raised concerns about water pollution and water shortage.

The 2003 year saw protests against Coca-Cola over extreme water scarcity and the drying up of wells due to the company’s overexploitation of grout water (Righttowater. n.d.).

This was one of the most unethical and harmful practices of the company, which led to the loss of livelihoods of many villagers who depended on agriculture for their existence (Indiaresource. n.d.).

Violation of the Ethical Theory of Utilitarianism

The company is violating the ethical theory utilitarianism.

According to this theory, an individual should engage in tat activities that benefit the greatest number of people, rather than taking actions that are self-directed and which only benefit the individual or the organization (Hursthouse 2013, 2013).

Contrary to this, Coca-Cola’s cheesiness practices were self-absorbed and only created revenue. Hundreds of people are being negatively affected by the same and losing their livelihoods and jobs as a result (Waronwant 2007).

There are a few reasons why companies are addressing their environmental and social impacts more often

According to the regulations and laws of Government, companies must pay close attention to the environmental and social consequences of business operations.

They are being restricted from continuing their operations by the Government and other organizations (Kazmin 2015).

The societies also punish those who engage in activities that have a negative effect on the environment or society. This can directly impact sales and brand image.

Coca Cola and other MNCs address their environmental and social impacts in these ways

Numerous companies have taken numerous steps to address the environmental and social impacts of their business operations.

Coca-Cola has taken several steps to improve its image. For example, it piloted an innovative water recovery system that works with the reuse and recovery approach.

Coca-Cola is also establishing rainwater harvesting systems in India to address the problem of water scarcity.


This report shows that organisations need to be more focused on their business practices and keep an eye on them.

It is clear that Coca-Cola and other large MNCs have engaged in unethical business practices, such as water scarcity, the exploitation of natural resources, and others.

It has also violated ethical theories as a result.

The overall analysis shows that the common ahs has realized the negative effects of unethical business practices. It has taken several steps to recover them, which will further assist the organisation in rebuilding their brand image and customer base.

Refer to

Coca-Cola Pilots an Innovative Water Recovery System, and Wins the IWA Award.

Accessed 4th May 2017.

Sustainable development: Environmental citizenship.

Indiaresource, n.d. Campaign To Hold Coca-Cola Responsible.

Retrieved on May 4, 2017.

Coca-Cola has had to cancel its plans for India’s bottling plants.

Accessed 4 May 2017.

Lindgreen, A., and Swaen V., 2010.

Corporate social responsibility.

International Journal of Management Reviews 12(1), pp. 1-7.

The contribution of corporate social responsibilities to sustainable development.

Accessed 4th May 2017.

Srikant P., Struggle to get ‘blue Gold’ in Plachimada (Kerala).



Accessed May 4, 2017.

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