Consumer and Food Sciences
MConSci Clothing Management
Exploring demographic differences in consumers’ perceptions of clothing retailers' corporate social responsibility (CSR) in South Africa
The clothing and textile industry is one of the main causes that lead to South Africa’s current environmental state. This is due to neglecting concepts such as pro-environmental behaviour that is not yet well-known in a local context. Due to social and environmental problems that manifest in the clothing and textile industry, adopting Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives have become a crucial issue among various stakeholders in the clothing sector. This study focuses on exploring demographic differences in consumers’ perceptions of clothing retailers’ CSR initiatives in the local South African context to inform future CSR campaigns and strategies for particular consumer segments. The triple bottom line (TBL) approach is of particular value in exploring the three dimensions of CSR and can thus be seen as a supporting theory for the research objectives and framework of this study as it serves as an appropriate theoretical basis for many CSR initiatives and studies. The research design for this particular project was initially exploratory and descriptive during the beginning phases, yet eventually progressed into more explanatory statistic inferences. The data for the original project was derived from an online questionnaire (incorporating adaptations of existing scales) and presented in numeric format thereby adopting a quantitative, cross-sectional approach.
Non-probability and purposive sampling techniques were used to recruit a sample (N=1632) consisting of male and female respondents older than 18 and residing within the geographical boundaries of South Africa. Data analysis procedures included an exploratory factor analysis (EFA) and other inferential statistical procedures in the form of one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). One of the first important conclusions derived from this study is that even though all six factors related to CSR perceptions (identified through an EFA) demonstrated underlying TBL dimensions that underscore social-, economic- and environmental facets, the factors did not resemble exact subdomains/groupings identified in prior empirical research (Öberseder et al., 2014). Furthermore,
differences observed in respondents’ CSR perceptions and purchase intention varied depending on the specific demographic variable in question.
Primary supervisor: Dr N Sonnenberg