Employee perceptions of hotel CSR activities during the COVID-19 pandemic

Miju Choi, Youngjoon Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Purpose: This study aims to adopt Carroll’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) pyramid framework as a theoretical lens for examining employee perspectives on South Korean hotels operating as quarantine facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Design/methodology/approach: The study adopted a qualitative approach consisting of the following components: in-depth interviews with employees and stakeholders of quarantine hotels, including frontline staff, government officials and medical staff, field observations and data from one researcher’s direct experience in a quarantined hotel. Findings: Six themes regarding the experience of operating quarantine hotels emerged from the in-depth interviews and field observations. The findings also showed an interplay between the hotel employees’ perspectives, the four components of the CSR pyramid and the benefits and costs to hotels operating as quarantine facilities. Research limitations/implications: This study focusses on the particular case of quarantine hotels in South Korea, and therefore caution is required in generalising the findings. Practical implications: The findings suggest that strategic partnerships can help to protect local communities whilst alleviating the hotel industry’s financial difficulties. They also explore an opportunity for business revitalisation in the midst of a global pandemic. Originality/value: This study finds that the voluntary decision of hotels to operate as coronavirus quarantine facilities is aligned with CSR because its ultimate aim is to protect the community from the risk of coronavirus from overseas arrivals. This study broadens the CSR literature in the fields of COVID-19 and hospitality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3355-3378
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management
Issue number10
StatePublished - 20 Oct 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited.


  • CSR
  • Covid-19
  • Global crisis
  • Hotel employee
  • Hotel operation
  • Quarantine hotel


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