Strategiese kommunikasiebestuur in korporatiewe sosiale betrokkenheidsprogramme van die Noordwes-Universiteit, Potchefstroomkampus
Van Rensburg, Anguree Jansen
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In the twenty first century it became evident that organisations should no longer only be managed in the interest of its shareholders, but also in that of their stakeholders. Businesses are now being requested to scrutinise their 'sphere of influence' to mitigate negative impacts on society and to build win-win relationships with their stakeholders. Since apartheid resulted in enormous gaps between the income and education levels of blacks and whites, it could be said that the responsibility of South-African organisations is far huger than those of organisations in developed countries. According to Rockey (2002:116), the pressure to deliver and communicate meaningful corporate social responsibility (CSI) programmes does not only originate from government, but also from the general public. According to Freeman (1984) and Steyn (2002a), these groups could even prevent an organisation from fulfilling its strategic objectives.The fact of the matter is that these groups would not like to know which detergent 'washes whitest', but whether an organisation is investing sufficiently in the communities supporting its brands. Although many sources reflected the necessity of CSI and stakeholder management, none of the sources analysed applied the management of stakeholders within CSI-programs to academic institutions. The NWU was selected as an investigation unit seeing that it had been was involved in corporate involvement projects ever since it was still known as the Potchefstroom University for Christian Higher Education. Therefore the general aim of this study was to determine how strategic communication management was applied in the corporate social involvement programs of the NWU. A qualitative research approach was followed, which consisted of an extensive literature study, content analysis and in depth interviews. The stakeholder theory and the two-way symmetrical approach were used as the backbone of this study while Reed's critical theory perspective was applied within the socio-economic conditions of South-Africa. A content analysis on documentation such as policies and brochures revealed that the University was involved in a vast number of corporate social involvement programs. The image portrayed showed that the University was quite keen on community upliftment. In contrast to this, in-depth interviews revealed that several of these programs are practised for personal gain and not necessarily out of concern for the community. Results showed that the University's approach was mainly financially orientated and would be even more so in the future. It could therefore be concluded that the corporate social involvement programs of the NWU are not managed according to the principals of the stakeholder theory.
- Humanities