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Relative effectiveness of prior corporate ability vs. corporate social responsibility associations on public responses in corporate crises
Unformatted Document Text:  Relative effectiveness of prior CAb vs. CSR in crises 7 strategy is geared toward creating CAb associations positioned on product-relevant dimensions, whereas a CSR strategy is geared toward creating CSR associations positioned on less product- relevant dimensions (Brown & Dacin, 1997; Biehal & Sheinin, 2007; Kim, 2011). However, considering recent findings of the direct transferring effects of a CSR strategy on CAb associations and product evaluation (Kim, 2011), different effects of CAb and CSR strategies should be further explored in other situations such as corporate crises. For example, if a CAb strategy containing CAb messages has greater transferring effects on product-related beliefs, attitudes, and evaluations than a CSR strategy, does the same apply to other situations such as how the public attributes crisis responsibility (i.e., blame) to the company confronting a crisis? Crisis Management and Attributions of Crisis Responsibility Crises can cause financial losses, undermine an organization's reputation, and fundamentally pose a threat to the organization's legitimacy (Allen & Caillouet, 1994; Coombs, 2007). Situational Crisis Communication Theory (SCCT), which was based on attribution theory (Weiner, 1986) employs crisis type, crisis history, and prior reputation to evaluate the overall threat imposed by a crisis to an organization’s reputation (Coombs, 2007; Coombs & Holladay, 1996). It is proposed that publics interpret each crisis according to three attributions: attribution of locus, attribution of controllability, and attribution of stability (Coombs, 2007; Folkes, 1984; Weiner, 1986). Locus is related to whether the public thinks the cause of the crisis is reflecting an aspect of the organization. That is to say that if the cause is evaluated to be internal (i.e., reflecting an aspect of the organization), the public tends to judge the organization much harsher (Coombs & Holladay, 1996). Controllability is whether the public thinks the cause of the crisis is controllable or not. A higher level of perceived organizational controllability for the cause of the

Authors: Kim, Sora.
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 Relative effectiveness of prior CAb vs. CSR in crises 
 
 
 
strategy is geared toward creating CAb associations positioned on product-relevant dimensions, 
whereas a CSR strategy is geared toward creating CSR associations positioned on less product-
relevant dimensions (Brown & Dacin, 1997; Biehal & Sheinin, 2007; Kim, 2011). However, 
considering recent findings of the direct transferring effects of a CSR strategy on CAb 
associations and product evaluation (Kim, 2011), different effects of CAb and CSR strategies 
should be further explored in other situations such as corporate crises. For example, if a CAb 
strategy containing CAb messages has greater transferring effects on product-related beliefs, 
attitudes, and evaluations than a CSR strategy, does the same apply to other situations such as 
how the public attributes crisis responsibility (i.e., blame) to the company confronting a crisis?  
Crisis Management and Attributions of Crisis Responsibility  
Crises can cause financial losses, undermine an organization's reputation, and 
fundamentally pose a threat to the organization's legitimacy (Allen & Caillouet, 1994; Coombs, 
2007). Situational Crisis Communication Theory (SCCT), which was based on attribution theory 
(Weiner, 1986) employs crisis type, crisis history, and prior reputation to evaluate the overall 
threat imposed by a crisis to an organization’s reputation (Coombs, 2007; Coombs & Holladay, 
1996). It is proposed that publics interpret each crisis according to three attributions: attribution 
of locus, attribution of controllability, and attribution of stability (Coombs, 2007; Folkes, 1984; 
Weiner, 1986). Locus is related to whether the public thinks the cause of the crisis is reflecting 
an aspect of the organization. That is to say that if the cause is evaluated to be internal (i.e., 
reflecting an aspect of the organization), the public tends to judge the organization much harsher 
(Coombs & Holladay, 1996). Controllability is whether the public thinks the cause of the crisis is 
controllable or not. A higher level of perceived organizational controllability for the cause of the 


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