The aim of this research is to investigate the relationship between consumer perception of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), corporate brand trust, corporate hypocrisy, and corporate reputation. Based on the one-to-one interview method using a structured questionnaire of 560 consumers in South Korea, the proposed model was estimated by structural equation modeling analysis. The model suggests that consumer perception of CSR influences consumer attitudes toward a corporation (i.e.
, perceived corporate hypocrisy and corporate reputation) by developing corporate brand trust. This in turn further enhances corporate reputation while decreasing corporate hypocrisy. The findings of our study demonstrate that consumer perception of CSR is an antecedent to corporate brand trust, which fully mediates the relationship between consumer perception of CSR and corporate reputation. In addition, corporate brand trust has the role of partial mediator in the relationship between consumer perception of CSR and corporate hypocrisy.
These results imply that to better understand the relationship between
consumer perception of CSR and consumer attitudes toward a corporation, it is necessary to consider corporate brand trust as
an important mediating variable. The theoretical and practical implications of this study are discussed, together with its limitations and potential for future research.
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