Social and Environmental Responsibility in Small and Medium Enterprises in Latin America

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Sep 2005
This technical paper determines the extent to which small and medium enterprises (SMEs) behave responsibly, and propose measures to enhance and promote corporate social responsibility in SMEs. Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has taken on a broader view and refers to the actions that firms take to carry out their activities in a responsible manner, respecting the environment, the community and the workforce, and also creating opportunities to enhance them. The study covers eight countries in Latin America and over 1,300 firms surveyed. As SMEs represent over 95 percent of all firms in Latin America, provide between 40 and 60 percent of all jobs, and account for 30 to 50 percent of GDP, their behavior can have a significant impact on society and the environment.