Authors: Stephen Zhang (University of Adelaide)
Abstract: Mental health, gender and CSR (corporate social responsibility) are all important topics in entrepreneurship, yet, research connecting them in an interdisciplinary manner in crisis situations, exemplified by the COVID-19 pandemic, remains a salient gap. This research interconnects mental health, gender and CSR to investigate the relationship between entrepreneurs’ mental distress during COVID-19 lockdowns and their businesses’ CSR after the lockdowns. We further posit this relationship varies by gender by integrating the mental health literature and social role theory. The results from a two-wave two-informant study, which surveyed the founder-CEO and another top manager per firm, confirm our theoretical predictions. Our findings that entrepreneurs' mental issues during the lockdown still have an effect on the level of CSR activities in their businesses post lockdowns expands the burgeoning literature under COVID, and this relationship is less negative for female entrepreneurs. This research contributes to several streams of entrepreneurship literature including mental health, gender and CSR.
Host: Miriam Bird (TUM School of Management)