Purpose The research aims to measure the effectiveness of collaborative learning exchanges transpired through digital tools and technologies (DT&Ts) employed by the mentor universities during the COVID-19 pandemic by conducting an empirical study on undergraduate students in Indian higher educational institutions (HEIs) under the mentorship program based on the corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative. The pandemic scenario, its impact on the mentor university's social responsibility and the way DT&Ts can assist are investigated in this article. Design/methodology/approach The interactions with experts and students were conducted to explore the DT&Ts for learning exchanges. Next, structural equation modeling (SEM) was performed to validate the model and perform regression analysis. The quantitative data collection was made through questionnaires during the second deadly wave of COVID-19 that hit India. Findings The independent variables (IVs) such as the IT infrastructure support (IT_IS), virtual collaborative tools (VCTs) and future-oriented technologies (FOTs) have a significant impact on the CSR learning outcomes (CSR_LOs) of undergraduate students under the mentorship program. However, IV research instruments for innovation could not make a significant effect. Research limitations/implications The IVs IT_IS, VCTs and FOTs influence the CSR_LOs, while RII does not have an influential impact. Practical implications As the online learning environment is expected to stay at least in a blended form, adequate CSR funding in infrastructure is necessitated to harness the full potential of this important resource, technology. The results of this empirical investigation affirm that IT_IS, VOTs and FOTs significantly impact CSR_LOs during the crisis. The study findings would encourage the mendtor universities and their stakeholders, including the mentee universities, to evolve and create an ecosystem for effective management of these resources to attain positive outcomes. The study findings can guide the mentor universities in managing uncertainties like pandemics and effectively using the earlier-mentioned critical resources for social responsibility. This research also allows the development of future applications adnd models in mentor-mentee universities for social responsibility, post-pandemic transformation and resilience. Social implications The DT&Ts came to the immediate rescue during the pandemic and positively affected collaborative CSR_LOs by the mentor universities, but they have not evolved to a level where offline learning can be replaced entirely. Hence, it can be inferred that a hybrid model is preferable. The study also improves the understanding of how DT&Ts are being harnessed to aid collaborative learning in fulfilling the mentors' CSR in fatal emergencies. The purpose is to equip the education system through mentorship so that universities can sustain, innovate and grow even in trying times. Also, it discusses the dynamics of various DT&Ts for creating a sustainable learning environment and utilizing them to make the teaching prolific and influential. Originality/value There is a scarcity of literature regarding the learning outcomes realized through CSR initiatives and collaboration between mentor-mentee institutions. There is a need to understand how these knowledge exchanges continued despite the physical restrictions during the pandemic. In this direction, this study helps to understand how the DT&Ts played a critical role in continuing learning and keeping abreast in a knowledge society from the perspective of resource-based view (RBV) in these precarious situations.
Stimulating CSR learning collaboration by the mentor universities with digital tools and technologies – an empirical study during the COVID-19 pandemic / Jain, Namita; Thomas, Asha; Gupta, Vikas; Ossorio, Mario; Porcheddu, Daniele. - 60:10(2022), pp. 2824-2848. [10.1108/MD-12-2021-1679]