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Workplace safety events and firm performance

Qazi S. Kabir (School of Economics and Business, State University of New York at Oneonta, Oneonta, New York, USA)
Kevin Watson (Department of Management, Louisiana Tech University, Ruston, Louisiana, USA)
Theekshana Somaratna (Rutgers Business School, Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey, USA)

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management

ISSN: 1741-038X

Article publication date: 8 December 2017

Issue publication date: 2 January 2018




The purpose of this paper is to address a deficiency in the literature by exploring the impact of negative workplace safety announcements on firm performance. The authors analyze the issue from a corporate social responsibility perspective and explore ways supply chain managers can contribute to improve firm performance through the development of safe working environments.


Utilizing a sample of 227 negative workplace safety announcements, this paper explores the implications of negative workplace safety announcements on the stock price of a firm using event study methodology.


The authors find that negative workplace announcements are associated with an abnormal decrease in shareholder value. Furthermore, the authors find evidence that negative workplace safety announcements have a more pronounced negative effect on firm value in the present environment than in any previous time period.

Practical implications

Operations managers need to play leading roles in ensuring safe working environments. The results provide the support needed to acquire the financial resources necessary to mitigate exposure to unsafe working conditions.


This study explores the impact of negative workplace safety announcements on a firm’s stock performance. It is the first large-scale study to look at public announcements of workplace incidents and to explore the impact of such announcements in the context of time.



Kabir, Q.S., Watson, K. and Somaratna, T. (2018), "Workplace safety events and firm performance", Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 29 No. 1, pp. 104-120.



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