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Assessing stakeholder network engagement

Shintaro Okazaki (King’s Business School, King's College London, London, UK)
Kirk Plangger (King’s Business School, King's College London, London, UK)
Thomas Roulet (Judge Business School, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK)
Héctor D. Menéndez (Department of Computer Science, Middlesex University, London, UK)

European Journal of Marketing

ISSN: 0309-0566

Article publication date: 30 December 2020

Issue publication date: 11 May 2021




With the popularity of social media platforms, firms have now tangible means not only to reach out to their stakeholders, but also to closely monitor those interactions. Yet, there are limited methodological advances on how to measure a firm’s stakeholder networks, and the level of engagement firms have with these networks. Drawn upon the customer engagement and stakeholder theory literature, this study aims to propose an approach to calculate a firm’s stakeholder network engagement (SNE) index.


After deriving the SNE index formula mathematically, this study illustrates how the SNE index functions using eight firms’ online corporate social responsibility (CSR) networks across four diverse industries.


This study proposes and illustrates a new approach of capturing the SNE in a stakeholder network for use by academic and practical researchers.

Research limitations/implications

Researchers can use the SNE index to assess engagement in stakeholder networks in various contexts.

Practical implications

Managers can use the SNE index to assess, benchmark and improve the nature and quality of their CSR strategies to derive greater return on their CSR investments.


Building on the stakeholder, communication and network analysis literatures, this study conceptualises SNE in four theoretical dimensions, namely, diffusion, accessibility, interactivity and influence. Then, an index that measures SNE is mathematically derived and empirically illustrated.



The authors acknowledge the efforts of the anonymous review team with special thanks to Professor Debbie Keeling for her guidance and advice throughout the review process.


Okazaki, S., Plangger, K., Roulet, T. and Menéndez, H.D. (2021), "Assessing stakeholder network engagement", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 55 No. 5, pp. 1359-1384.



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Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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