Kazunori Kobayashi

Doctor of Philosophy, (Management)
Study Completed: 2019
Massey Business School


Thesis Title
Corporate Approaches to Human Sustainability: Workforce Wellbeing in Large Japanese

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

In Japan, there is growing concern about emerging issues affecting workforce wellbeing and human sustainability, including long working hours, lack of work-life balance, and gender inequality. Based on interviews with managers with corporate social responsibility (CSR) and their stakeholders, Mr Kobayashi investigated how large Japanese companies seek to resolve these issues. He found that companies seek to implement workforce wellbeing and human sustainability initiatives (such as health and productivity, work and life, and gender equality and diversity) as part of their CSR strategies. These initiatives are constrained by an institutionalised workstyle, which consists of core business practices and existing stakeholder pressure. Findings indicate that companies need to develop coherence between the CSR initiatives, business strategy, core business practices, and emerging stakeholder pressure while working through an institutionalised workstyle. Mr Kobayashi’s research has implications for managers and policy makers promoting CSR and workforce wellbeing.

Associate Professor Gabriel Eweje
Associate Professor David Tappin



Kobayashi, K., Eweje, G., & Tappin, D. (in press). Employee Wellbeing and Human Sustainability: Perspectives of Managers in Large Japanese Corporations. Business Strategy and the Environment.

Book Chapter

Kobayashi, K. (2016). Japan Country Profile. In W, Visser (Eds.), The World Guide to Sustainable Enterprise Volume 2 – Asia Pacific (pp. 71-77). UK: Greenleaf Publishing in association with GSE Research. DOI: https://doi.org/10.9774/GLEAF.978-1-78353-463-0_11


Kobayashi, K., Eweje, G., Tappin, D., & Sajjad, A. (2017, July). Corporate approach to human sustainability: workforce wellbeing in Japanese companies. Presented at The 4th International Conference On CSR, Sustainability, Ethics, and Governance: Responsible Business for Uncertain Times and a Sustainable Future. Perth, Australia.

Kobayashi, K., Eweje, G., & Tappin, D. (2016, September). Corporate approach to human sustainability: workforce wellbeing in Japanese companies. Presented at JFBC (Japan Forum of Business and Society) 6th Annual Conference 2016: Marketing and Social Change. Tokyo, Japan.

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