The role of Corporate Social Responsibility in the decision-making process of consumers in Ukraine

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This paper aims to investigate the impact of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) of Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) companies on consumer buying behavior in the Ukrainian market. The qualitative data for this study were collected with the help of semi-structured interviews conducted with a total of 10 respondents, including 5 Ukrainian consumers (with different levels of responsible consumption adoption) and 5 CSR experts from FMCG companies located in Ukraine (both local and global; with CSR adoption level varying from low to well-developed).
The data obtained for this study revealed that the level of consumer awareness about CSR in Ukraine is still low. However, the level of awareness and the actual consumption of responsible products are constantly growing. The results also show that Ukrainian consumers who already have some level of awareness about CSR perceive CSR communication as more credible when it does not originate from the company directly or is endorsed by a third party. At the same time, interviewed experts stated that to raise awareness among the wider population, FMCG companies have to communicate their CSR achievements directly and massively. Ukrainian consumers are mostly impacted by the product-related CSR type, such as bio-ingredients and sustainable packaging. Price premium for responsible products is the key factor that causes the “intention-behavior gap” in Ukraine.
Practitioners from the FMCG industry in Ukraine may use the information provided by this study to shape their CSR strategies, which will allow them to cater to societal demands and, as a result, impact consumer buying behavior.

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    • Figure 1. Adapted model of the decision-making process based on the merge of TRA and SCT
    • Figure 2. Conceptual research framework
    • Table 1. Examples of expert statements regarding the CSR awareness level in Ukraine
    • Table A1. Overview of experts participated in the interviews
    • Table B1. Overview of consumers participated in the interviews
    • Conceptualization
      Ganna Lobachevska, Claus-Heinrich Daub
    • Data curation
      Ganna Lobachevska
    • Formal Analysis
      Ganna Lobachevska
    • Investigation
      Ganna Lobachevska
    • Methodology
      Ganna Lobachevska, Claus-Heinrich Daub
    • Visualization
      Ganna Lobachevska
    • Writing – original draft
      Ganna Lobachevska
    • Writing – review & editing
      Ganna Lobachevska, Claus-Heinrich Daub
    • Supervision
      Claus-Heinrich Daub
    • Validation
      Claus-Heinrich Daub