Because of the uncertainty surrounding the nature of CSR activity, it is difficult to define CSR and to be certain about any such activity. There are three basic principles which together comprise all CSR activity.
If the resources are utilized in the present, then they are no longer available for use in the future. This is particularly pertaining to those resources which are finite in nature. Measures of sustainability would consider the rate at which resources are consumed by the organization in relation to the rate at which the resources could be generated.
Accountability is concerned with the organizations realization that its action affects the external environment therefore assuming responsibility for the effects of its actions. It implies that the organization is a part of wider societal network and has responsibilities to the entire network rather than just to the owners of the organization.
It means that the external impact of the actions of the organization can be ascertained from the organizations reporting and pertinent facts are not disguised within that reporting. Transparency can be seen as a part of process of recognition of responsibility on the part of the organization for the external effects of its actions and equally part of process of transferring power to the stakeholders.