In recent decades there has been increasing attention to the social and environmental impacts of business. Stakeholders are ever more concerned and responsible about environmental and social issues and prefer to deal with companies that act sustainably. Accordingly, companies are called to continuously communicate with stakeholders about their corporate social responsibility (CSR), in order to improve stakeholder perceptions and meet their expectations. In this dissertation, I focus on the measurement of corporate sustainability, providing new methods for assessing, monitoring and improving corporate sustainability performance. These methods are mainly based on CSR reporting and stakeholder CSR perceptions and expectations.
This dissertation contains four articles, three of which propose and apply new models and methods for measuring corporate sustainability performance. In particular, one provides a two-dimensional CSR model for measuring the development of CSR programs and the CSR commitment disclosed by the company. The other two articles provide a method to compare company disclosed CSR commitment with stakeholder CSR perceptions and expectations, and a model to classify customers according to these comparisons. The last article of this dissertation explores the impact of individual characteristics (gender, education and age) on CSR perceptions and expectations.