CHESTNUT HILL, MA — With public trust in Wall Street at an all-time low, consumer facing companies ranked higher for their ethics, citizenship and workplace practices, according to a new analysis from the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship and Reputation Institute.
Walt Disney Co. found itself at the top of the heap, followed by Microsoft, Google, Honda and Johnson & Johnson.
The institute created the index based on survey results from its Boston College-Reputation Institute 2009 Global Reputation Study, which captures public perception about corporate CSR practices. Consumer brands made up the bulk of the Top 50 companies (PDF) in the index, while banking, finance, oil and gas, utilities and telecommunications ranked below the global average.
"While the overall reputation of the American business sector has been tarnished with a broad brush, many individual companies still stand out as responsible leaders in the eyes of the public," Chris Pinney, director of research and policy at the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship, said in a statement. "To build a reputation as a leader in corporate social responsibility, companies should focus on strong governance practices, positive working conditions, and a commitment to supporting the needs of communities and the environment."
A new trend in the index is the addition of seven value-conscious retailers since the 2008 list was compiled: Target, JCPenney, Kroger, Kohl's and BJ's Wholesale Club. Publix, Coscto and Lowe's made the Top 50 last year.
The Top 20
1. Walt Disney Co.
4. Honda of America Manufacturing
5. Johnson & Johnson
7. General Mills
8. Kraft Foods
9. Campbell Soup Co.
14. Berkshire Hathaway
15. Costco Wholesale
18. Procter & Gamble
19. Levi Strauss
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