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Between a rock and a hard place: The dynamics of stakeholder interactions influencing corporate sustainability practices

Shamama Afreen (Indian Institute of Management Lucknow, Lucknow, India)
Sushil Kumar (Indian Institute of Management Lucknow, Lucknow, India)

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal

ISSN: 2040-8021

Article publication date: 5 September 2016

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Abstract

Purpose

Development project implementation involving ecological and social externalities is an iterative process due to dynamic challenges emerging from the need to reconcile multiple, and often conflicting, interests of stakeholders. Stakeholder interactions result in learnings for project developers as well as policy makers. This paper aims to track corporate-civil society organizations-state interactions and learnings in case of a port development project in an eco-sensitive and socially challenging region of India.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors try to unpack the interactions among various stakeholders in the case of development of Dhamra Port being developed by the Dhamra Port Company Ltd, in the state of Orissa, India.

Findings

The authors find that sustainable development policy formulation and implementation is an evolutionary process involving plugging of governance gaps at each successive stage with civil society actors playing an active role.

Research limitations/implications

The study is based on single case of a major port development in India.

Practical implications

The paper highlights that development in emerging economies through large projects is unavoidable. The development-sustainability dilemma cannot be overlooked any further; rather, it needs to be resolved with complete participation of all involved stakeholders.

Originality/value

The paper provides account of long and complex interactions among various players involved in developmental project in an emerging economy. The learnings from the paper will be relevant for policymakers, corporate executives and civil society activists.

Keywords

Citation

Afreen, S. and Kumar, S. (2016), "Between a rock and a hard place: The dynamics of stakeholder interactions influencing corporate sustainability practices", Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, Vol. 7 No. 3, pp. 350-375. https://doi.org/10.1108/SAMPJ-03-2015-0020

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited