Williams, Geoffrey. "Are Socially Responsible Investors Different from Conventional Investors? A Comparison Across Six Countries" Working Paper, Centre for Business, Organisations and Society, School of Management, University of Bath. December 2005a.
Presents and analyzes data from a 2003 GlobeScan poll of 6,028 individual investors in the U.S. Germany, Canada, Australia, the Netherlands, and the U.K. This survey was not originally designed to study social investment behavior in detail, but offers important clues about motivations and attitudes. The study defines as socially responsible any respondents who answered 'yes' to the following question: "Has a company's demonstrated social responsibility ever had an influence on your investment decisions - have you either bought or sold shares as a result?"
In contrast to its companion paper, "Some Determinants of the Socially Responsible Investment Decision: A Cross Country Study", which focused on the variables that best-explained the choice to be a social investor, this study is focused on difference between social investors and conventional investors. It tests 21 hypotheses related to this question using probit regression analysis.
Hypothesis that appeared to find strong support across countries included:
H12 - "SRI investors will be more likely punish firms for poor CSR than conventional investors."
H13 - "SRI investors will prioritise social (other-centred) aims over financial (self-centred) aims.
H14 - "More SRI investors than conventional investors will prioritise social aims over financial aims."
H18 - "More SRI investors will believe that socially responsible firms are more rather than less profitable."
H20 - "SRI investors will be less likely to trust company accounts than to not trust them."
Several hypotheses found support in some countries, but not in others. H2, for example, "SRI investors will have a higher level of education than conventional investors" found support in the U.S., Canada, and the Netherlands, but not in the U.K. and Germany.