Social responsibility and climate change seem to be an ongoing, encircle of unresolved opinions. Without research and information, one’s assumption is that the responsibility rests upon corporations and even government entities.

Who’s Responsible for Climate Change?

However, there are increasing arguments that suggest social responsibility are in the hands of everyone. I found this really interesting, in-depth study, in which researchers conducted a study on how community members have a strong expectation in that it is a corporation’s duty to deal with climate change. The study further examines whether these expectations are greater than the expectation than other societal groups such as the international community, federal, state, and local governments, individuals and families, and environmental groups have a duty to deal with climate change.  

In brief, I thought these observations were really interesting as these are among the contributing factors controlling the “who’s responsible” beliefs.

For example, if a person believes that the climate change is caused by human activities, then at the individual level, it is expected that individuals are responsible for dealing with it. In contrast, when a person believes climate change is caused by organizations, then they are more likely to hold organizations responsible for dealing with it.

With that in mind, one has to wonder, who can society rightfully hold accountable to social responsibilities? How has the claim for social responsibility somehow become a badge of honor and respect versus its the right thing to do?

Contributor: Crystal Watts

Unsworth, Kerrie L., et al. “Is Dealing with Climate Change a Corporation’s Responsibility? A Social Contract Perspective.” Frontiers in Psychology, Frontiers Media S.A., 2016,