|University of Oslo
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Most research projects concerning Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) address company policies, motivations and strategies. The focus here, however, is not business, but governments. This thesis is an analysis of the Finnish government s policy for CSR, contrasted to the British. CSR policy is here described along three aspects: the resources allocated to CSR, the policy style employed and how the CSR policy is framed. Regarding the international trend towards CSR at present, the new institutionalism school offers two contrasting expectations as to how it will be received in different national contexts: sociological institutionalism and historical institutionalism. Sociological institutionalism emphasises policy mimicing and expects a considerable similarity between policies. However, when CSR policies are studied empirically, substantial differences are found. So to what degree is this perspective sufficient for explaining policy outcome? The follow-up question is whether differences in CSR policies can be derived from differences in national institutional frameworks. The varieties of capitalism is an approach that highlights differences that might be of relevance for CSR. Varieties of capitalism call our attention to three institutions: regulatory traditions, the influence of organisations as well as informal institutions (culture, informal rules and history).