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Article
Publication date: 5 June 2017

Esben Rahbek Gjerdrum Pedersen, Linne Marie Lauesen and Arno Kourula

The purpose of this paper is to examine to what extent the conventional stakeholder model mirrors managerial perceptions of the stakeholder environment in the Swedish…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine to what extent the conventional stakeholder model mirrors managerial perceptions of the stakeholder environment in the Swedish fashion industry. The authors aim to adopt a novel approach to stakeholder measurement, as the traditional stakeholder model is constrained by its static two-dimensional nature, which captures neither the nuances of the stakeholder literature nor the dynamics of the firm’s stakeholder universe.

Design/methodology/approach

Empirically, the paper is based on findings from a survey among 492 Swedish fashion manufacturers and retailers.

Findings

The paper reports significant discrepancy between the conventional stakeholder model and the perceptions of real-life managers of the stakeholder environment. On the surface, their understanding is more in line with the managerial model of the firm from which the stakeholder literature originally departs. It is argued, however, that the discrepancy may be rooted in technology rather than theory as the stakeholder model is constrained by its static two-dimensional nature, which captures neither the nuances of the stakeholder literature nor the dynamics of the firm’s stakeholder universe. The paper, therefore, introduces an animated alternative to the conventional stakeholder model that provides a richer graphical representation of a firm’s stakeholder universe.

Research limitations/implications

The paper refers to the open-ended questions in the survey in terms of descriptive statistics, and not the entire quantitative measures in the survey. This is because these questions are crucial to the authors’ approach to the suggested new stakeholder model, which is not tested quantitatively, but should be perceived as explorative – as a qualitative outcome of the survey. The survey is conducted through the web in the Swedish fashion industry only; thus; the authors’ suggested model needs further quantitative qualification, which the authors plead for in future research.

Originality/value

The originality of the paper is its novel approach to stakeholder measurement based on the perceptions of real-life managers of the stakeholder environment of the Swedish fashion industry. The traditional stakeholder model is constrained by its static two-dimensional nature, which the paper’s animated three-dimensional alternative provides a richer graphical representation of a firm’s stakeholder universe.

Details

Social Responsibility Journal, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-1117

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 8 November 2011

Guillaume Delalieux and Arno Kourula

Purpose – In management literature, the influence that nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) can have on reforming multinational corporations' practices is traditionally…

Abstract

Purpose – In management literature, the influence that nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) can have on reforming multinational corporations' practices is traditionally depicted as significant. Few studies have emphasized the limits that NGOs face. The aim of this chapter is to:1.Describe how the positive view of NGO influence is implicitly built on a neo-Tocquevillian understanding of civil society and an explicit utilization of Habermasian ideas of civil society and communication.2.Reveal the limitations of the ability of NGOs alone to affect the negative aspects related to corporate activity and capitalism in general, building on existing critical work on civil society.

Design/methodology/approach – We review the existing mainstream literature on NGO–business relationships and compare it to the less developed body of critical research on the subject.

Findings – We found that current mainstream research on NGO–business relationships are implicitly referring to a specific positive conception of civil society believing in the power of civil society to reform society (Neo-Tocquevillian Belief).

We then propose critical alternative conceptions of civil society, to allow the development of further research in a more critical perspective, insisting on the limits of the ability of NGOs to mitigate the worst effects of neoliberalism.

Originality/value – The value of this chapter lies in the presentation of the implicit assumptions on which mainstream research on NGO–business relationships are based today. The chapter identifies possible alternative theoretical orientations for future research for doctoral students or researchers.

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Article
Publication date: 9 August 2008

Arno Kourula and Minna Halme

This paper aims to classify different corporate responsibility (CR) actions into three types – philanthropy, CR integration and CR innovation – and examines different

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to classify different corporate responsibility (CR) actions into three types – philanthropy, CR integration and CR innovation – and examines different forms of corporate engagement with nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) through this categorization. The focus is on the societal and business outcomes of engagement.

Design/methodology/approach

The study analyzes 20 business‐NGO collaborations of three case companies – Hindustan Unilever, Nokia and Stora Enso. Cases are chosen based on revelatory sampling and data are gathered through documentary research of corporate sustainability reports, project reports and websites. Data analysis focuses on engagement forms, business and societal outcomes of engagement and utilizes a categorization of CR.

Findings

Different CR types involve different forms of cooperation ranging from sponsorship to partnership. Furthermore, CR integration and CR innovation seem to have more potential for long‐term positive business outcomes than philanthropy. In terms of societal outcomes, CR innovation seems to have the highest potential in creating local income‐generating mechanisms and supporting local self‐sufficiency. A main suggestion of the study is that more in‐depth case studies of CR projects should be conducted to develop and improve indicators for business and societal outcomes.

Originality/value

First, the paper applies a new pragmatic categorization of CR types. Second, it studies empirically a topic that has received relatively little attention – business‐NGO collaboration. Third, it analyzes the business and societal outcomes of different types of business‐NGO engagement.

Details

Corporate Governance: The international journal of business in society, vol. 8 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1472-0701

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 8 November 2011

Guillaume Delalieux and Arno Kourula

Le premier qui, ayant enclos un terrain, s'avisa de dire: “Ceci est à moi” et trouva des gens assez simples pour le croire, fut le vrai fondateur de la société civile. Que

Abstract

Le premier qui, ayant enclos un terrain, s'avisa de dire: “Ceci est à moi” et trouva des gens assez simples pour le croire, fut le vrai fondateur de la société civile. Que de crimes, de guerres, de meurtres, que de misères et d'horreurs n'eût point épargnés au genre humain celui qui, arrachant les pieux et comblant le fossé, eût crié à ses semblables: “Gardez-vous d’écouter cet imposteur; vous êtes perdus et vous oubliez que les fruits sont à tous, et que la terre n'est à personne!– J.J. Rousseau (Discours sur l'origine et les fondements de l'inégalité parmi les hommes, 1755)The first man who, having enclosed a piece of ground, bethought himself of saying ‘This is mine’, and found people simple enough to believe him, was the real founder of civil society. From how many crimes, wars, and murders, from how many horrors and misfortunes might not any one have saved mankind, by pulling up the stakes, or filling up the ditch, and crying to his fellows: Beware of listening to this imposter; you are undone if you once forget that the fruits of the earth belong to us all, and the earth itself to nobody.–J. J. Rousseau (Discours sur l'origine et les fondements de l'inégalité parmi les hommes, 1755, translated by G. D. H. Cole)

Details

The Third Sector
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-281-4

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Book part
Publication date: 8 November 2011

Abstract

Details

The Third Sector
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-281-4

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Article
Publication date: 22 March 2011

Abstract

Details

Strategic Direction, vol. 27 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0258-0543

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Article
Publication date: 8 June 2015

Frederick Ahen and Peter Zettinig

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is an issue-oriented substantive domain. Nevertheless, there are countless socio-economic, medico-techno-scientific, environmental…

Abstract

Purpose

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is an issue-oriented substantive domain. Nevertheless, there are countless socio-economic, medico-techno-scientific, environmental and ethical philosophical questions that are far from being settled. In pursuit of a more desirable and sustainable future, this work problematizes current corporate responsibility (CR) research, education and practice.

Design/methodology/approach

This contribution provides a critical perspective on the future of CR research and practice and offers a way forward based on theoretical prescience.

Findings

The paper delineates a taxonomy of typical crises, categorized as burning, existential, overlooked and neglected crises. This taxonomy can be used as a tool for all forms of scenario analysis, empirical work and policymaking. This allows various futures issues to be given targeted interventions, assigned a focal theory, or allocated differentiated resources and appropriate time and space depending on their technical nature and the institutional context within which the issues unfold.

Social implications

This paper argues that CR research risks losing steam despite its near ubiquitous nature and the major contributions hitherto made. Nevertheless, when problems are strategically thought out in the light of the taxonomy above, they provide promising avenues for insightful research and value-creating practice to meet the expectations of both business and society.

Originality/value

A profound chasm exists between CR practice and rhetoric. This void is particularly stark when we consider the interface between science and technology and developing economies. This paper explores desirable futures for CR while analyzing what is possible and probable.

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