Publicity for corporate citizenship initiatives has increased, as firms try to mitigate the damage done by revelations of corporate malfeasance over the past few years. At the same time, consumers have become increasingly skeptical, if not cynical, about the true goals of these corporate social responsibility (CSR) efforts. Skeptics feel that all too often corporate altruism is a veiled attempt to grow markets or increase profitability. A paper to be published in a forthcoming issue of the Journal of Consumer Psychology explains how consumers become skeptics and how firms can win them over.“A lot of firms engage in social responsibility not only because it could improve their image or create a connection with the customer base but because it also helps society,” says coauthor Mark R. Forehand, assistant professor of marketing and international business at the University of Washington Business School. These dual motivations can get them in trouble. Take the example of an athletic shoe manufacturer's initiative to improve public health and safety by promoting athletics among youth. Skeptics might say the firm is simply trying to build a larger user base for its products.