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Article
Publication date: 9 November 2010

Pekka Aula

This paper aims to discuss the emergence of corporate reputational risk in terms of social media, exploring its threats to and possibilities for organizations' strategic

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33771

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to discuss the emergence of corporate reputational risk in terms of social media, exploring its threats to and possibilities for organizations' strategic reputation management.

Design/methodology/approach

Reputation risk, the possibility of damaging one's reputation, presents a threat to organizations in many ways. Little is known, however, about the connections between reputation risk management and social media as a mediated business environment. Following the latest conceptualizations of strategic reputation management and social media, the paper identifies several challenges for organizations. To make sense of this issue, the paper proposes a novel context for strategic reputation management, founded on the metaphor of ambient publicity, which involves not only social media, but also organizations and their stakeholders.

Findings

The paper argues that social media expands the spectrum of reputation risks and boosts risk dynamics, and that social media can have notable effects on corporate‐level strategic endeavors, which must be considered in order to be successful in the modern business environment. Nine tenets for corporate leaders involved in strategic reputation management are presented.

Originality/value

The paper offers new insights on social media's relation to reputation risk and its management. The ambient publicity, for example, has value to leaders involved in strategic reputation management when trying to identify factors characterizing the changing business environment. Understanding ambient publicity as an environment of meaning indicates that organizations, their stakeholders, and the public create a “complex narrative web” surrounding reputation. The more unified this web is, the stronger the organization is in terms of reputation risk.

Details

Strategy & Leadership, vol. 38 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1087-8572

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Article
Publication date: 20 March 2017

Christian Eckert

The corporate reputation of a firm and reputation risk is becoming increasingly important because of the rise of social media and the ongoing globalization. While defining…

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6734

Abstract

Purpose

The corporate reputation of a firm and reputation risk is becoming increasingly important because of the rise of social media and the ongoing globalization. While defining and measuring corporate reputation and reputation risk represent the first steps in corporate reputation (risk) management, there is no general agreement in defining and measuring these two terms. Hence, this paper aims to give an overview of the existing literature in this regard, discuss it with respect to the operability in corporate reputation (risk) management and, based on this, present a holistic and consistent approach to define and measure corporate reputation and reputation risk.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper gives an overview of the literature regarding definitions and measurement methods of corporate reputation and reputation risk. Moreover, it discusses such definitions and measurement methods with respect to the operability in corporate reputation (risk) management.

Findings

Based on an overview of the literature regarding definitions and measurement methods of corporate reputation and reputation risk, the authors present a holistic and consistent approach to define and measure corporate reputation and reputation risk.

Originality/value

The authors present an holistic and consistent approach to define and measure corporate reputation and reputation risk with focus on (risk) management purposes.

Details

The Journal of Risk Finance, vol. 18 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1526-5943

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Article
Publication date: 18 January 2016

Nadine Gatzert and Joan Schmit

The purpose of this paper is to present a coherent and effective enterprise risk management (ERM) framework that includes necessary steps and processes for integrating…

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4985

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a coherent and effective enterprise risk management (ERM) framework that includes necessary steps and processes for integrating reputation risk management into an organization’s overall ERM approach which is intended to support corporate strategic success. In particular, reputation creation, enhancement, and protection are critical to an organization’s success, yet highly challenging given the wide ranging and somewhat opaque nature of the concept. These qualities call for a strong ERM approach to reputation that is holistic and integrative, yet existing knowledge of how to do so is limited.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper evaluates and synthesizes existing reputation literature in developing an enterprise-wide reputation risk management framework incorporating necessary steps, processes, and considerations. We address risk strategy, risk assessment, risk governance, and risk culture as key elements of ERM and conclude with suggestions for future research.

Findings

The results suggest several important ideas which are of great relevance when integrating reputation risk management into an ERM framework. Among these are the importance of: identifying and understanding the purpose of key stakeholders, appreciating the multidimensional and layered effect of events on organizational reputation and monitoring the influence of technological advances.

Originality/value

The authors contribute to the literature by developing a framework for enterprise-wide reputation risk management that applies across industries. In contrast to previous work, the authors offer a broader perspective on the underlying causes and consequences of reputation damage based on empirical evidence and insight from the academic literature and provide additional detail in identification of reputation determinants, antecedents, and drivers. While much of this information exists in various places in the literature, it has not been organized into a cohesive framework nor used in developing an ERM strategy.

Details

The Journal of Risk Finance, vol. 17 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1526-5943

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Article
Publication date: 2 February 2010

Alfonso Siano, Philip J. Kitchen and Maria Giovanna Confetto

The purpose of this paper is to identify convergent elements between corporate reputation and financial resources. The paper seeks to draw parallels between corporate…

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4611

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify convergent elements between corporate reputation and financial resources. The paper seeks to draw parallels between corporate reputation management and corporate financial management in order to define common management principles.

Design/methodology/approach

In this paper, the analogy‐based approach is used to identify similarities in the functions and risks between corporate reputation and financial resources. This approach is the prerequisite for defining common management principles.

Findings

The paper proposes some arguments in favour of common functions and risks thesis of corporate reputation and financial resources. The finding of common functions and risks opens the way for an analysis of common principles in corporate reputation management and corporate finance management.

Research limitations/implications

Cross‐fertilization between corporate communication and reputation and corporate finance can encourage effective evolution over time of the common management principles. The limitation of the research is the parallelism between two types of resources which traditionally belong to different subjects/disciplines. Cultural barriers may oppose the acceptance of this unusual juxtaposition of resources.

Practical implications

The use of these common principles allows for the development of an appropriate cultural background of managers. It could create advantages both for large companies and small businesses. The shared cultural background and language should serve to improve interaction and dialogue among managers on an intra‐ and inter‐organizational levels.

Originality/value

The parallels between corporate reputation and financial resources; the common management principles of these different resources; and their theoretical‐conceptual and practical implications, are entirely new topics in literature.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article
Publication date: 11 June 2013

Fred Lemke and Henry L. Petersen

In the supply chain context, professionals manage various risks that have the potential to disrupt supplies. Surprisingly, one kind of risk is often overlooked…

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4315

Abstract

Purpose

In the supply chain context, professionals manage various risks that have the potential to disrupt supplies. Surprisingly, one kind of risk is often overlooked: reputational risk. It is critical to recognise the risk potential that impacts on the reputation of the organisation. Furthermore, managers require an appropriate tool set to control it. The present paper aims to have a twin focus: first, it will lay out the basic premises behind corporate reputation, reputational risk, and corporate social responsibility (CSR). Second, the practical implications will be addressed that lead to a substantial teaching component.

Design/methodology/approach

The present paper is based on two research stages. Initially, the authors adopted the “reflective practitioner” philosophy that aimed at discovering the common beliefs in practice that explain working processes and management thought. In particular, they explored the foundation of CSR, reputation and risk management with specialists in dedicated workshops (electronics, energy, life sciences, telecommunications and defence industries, located at different stages of the supply chain). To gain more insight, the authors subsequently conducted in‐depth interviews in these topic areas with key informants. The combination allowed them methodological triangulation.

Findings

Reputation can be created and controlled as soon as its nature is fully understood (Reputational Owner). Interestingly, it is a transceiving business phenomenon that crosses organizational boundaries. Spillover effects can thus be observed at all stages of the supply chain by mere business association (Reputational Borrower). Reputation can range from positive to negative extremes and needs to be managed. The results of the authors' exploratory work are presented as quotations to provide the substance of the current and relevant subject.

Research limitations/implications

The present work is exploratory in nature. Quantitative research methods are now required to validate and substantiate the findings.

Practical implications

CSR is a contemporary foundation to mitigate reputational risk throughout the supply chain. The authors outline the reputational risk factors in this context and the ways of managing those.

Social implications

In the market place, reputation is a reflection of the supply chain offering (products, services), communication (promotion, PR), and action (behaviour and views expressed). Consumers adopt supply chain reputation as a yardstick when making purchase decisions. It is therefore critical to manage reputational risk in the supply chain and this paper outlines the cause and effect relationships that this topic entails in modern society.

Originality/value

This paper discusses the importance of reputational risk in the supply chain. It also explains the ways it can be mitigated via CSR. This is the management baseline that adds tremendous value for theory builders and present and future managers. Having the education of Master students in mind, the authors outline three specific teaching units that bring the conceptual underpinnings alive in an interactive learning environment.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 18 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

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Article
Publication date: 28 March 2008

Jan Bebbington, Carlos Larrinaga and Jose M. Moneva

The purpose of this paper is to explore the proposition that corporate social responsibility reporting could be viewed as both an outcome of, and part of reputation risk

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24789

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the proposition that corporate social responsibility reporting could be viewed as both an outcome of, and part of reputation risk management processes.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper draws heavily on management research. In addition, an image restoration framework is introduced.

Findings

The concept of reputation risk management could assist in the understanding of corporate social responsibility reporting practice.

Originality/value

This paper explores the link between reputation risk management and existing theorising in social accounting.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article
Publication date: 20 September 2011

Janine Hogan and Sumit Lodhia

The purpose of this paper is to explore the ways in which a leading Australian public company uses sustainability reporting to respond to reputation risk arising from…

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3910

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the ways in which a leading Australian public company uses sustainability reporting to respond to reputation risk arising from proposed regulation.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses a case study approach and both qualitative and quantitative methods of content analysis. The qualitative component is based on a framework of reputation conceptualisations and image restoration strategies adopted from existing literature.

Findings

The key findings of this paper are that the concept of reputation risk management (RRM) could assist in understanding what motivates sustainability reporting, and how proposed regulation could lead to a decrease in the quantity but increase in the quality of sustainability reporting. In addition, “honesty” is revealed as a potential RRM strategy.

Originality/value

The paper extends existing research on the RRM thesis by studying an Australian case of a reputation‐damaging event over a number of reporting years, examining a range of sustainability reporting media, and adding a quantitative aspect to an otherwise qualitative research framework.

Details

International Journal of Accounting & Information Management, vol. 19 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1834-7649

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Article
Publication date: 7 April 2015

Timothy Coombs and Sherry Holladay

The purpose of this paper is to explore the role of corporate social responsibility (CSR) as a crisis risk. The bulk of the current research on CSR and crisis examined the…

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4754

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the role of corporate social responsibility (CSR) as a crisis risk. The bulk of the current research on CSR and crisis examined the role of CSR as an asset in a crisis. CSR as crisis risk is a direct function of CSR’s increasingly important role in reputation management. CSR has become an important aspect of corporate reputations – it is one of the dimensions used to assess a corporation’s crisis. The value of CSR to reputations is illustrated in the RepTrak reputation measure from the Reputation Institute and the value it places upon CSR. If stakeholders can challenge CSR claims by arguing a corporation is acting irresponsibly, the stakeholders can erode the corporation’s reputational assets by creating a challenge crisis. A CSR-based challenge occurs when stakeholders redefine a corporation’s current practices as irresponsible. The CSR-based challenge can be risk because it can damage reputational assets and potentially escalate into a crisis. CSR becomes a leverage point for stakeholders seeking to engage in a challenge crisis. As corporations place more value on the CSR dimension of reputation, CSR-based challenge becomes an increasingly powerful leverage point.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is conceptual with an emphasis on theory building.

Findings

The manuscript details the CSR-based challenge process. It examines the nature of CSR-based challenges, how they can become threats to corporations, and how corporations can respond to the threats. There is also an explanation of how CSR-based challenges indicate the shift to private politics/social issues management and the implications of this shift for advancing a neoliberal perspective.

Practical implications

CSR and crises have a much more complex relationship than current research has identified. CSR can be a crisis risk, not just an asset used to protect a reputation during a crisis. CSR can be the reason a crisis exists and threats a corporation – it is a crisis risk. The primary manifestation of CSR as a crisis risk is the challenge crisis premised on social irresponsibility, what the authors term the CSR-based challenge crisis. This paper will detail the process whereby CSR is transformed from a crisis resource to a crisis threat. The end result of this analysis will be set of insights into CSR-based challenge crises. These insights can help stakeholders seeking to create social change through a challenge and corporate managers seeking to address a challenge crisis.

Social implications

Challenge crises are an example of private politics/social issues management, when stakeholders seek to create changes in corporate behavior by engaging the organization directly rather than through public policy efforts. The paper offers insights into how social issues management can work to create social change by altering problematic corporate behaviors.

Originality/value

There is limited research into CSR as a crisis risk and in understanding how challenge crises help to create social change. This paper will provide new insights into CSR as a crisis risk, challenge crises, and private politics. Ideas from public relations, corporate communication, and political communication will be fused to create a novel framework for illuminating these related topics.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 20 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article
Publication date: 10 August 2015

Henry L. Petersen and Fred Lemke

– The purpose of this paper is to explore reputational risk that are borne in the supply chain and contribute to this contemporary but growing research stream.

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3355

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore reputational risk that are borne in the supply chain and contribute to this contemporary but growing research stream.

Design/methodology/approach

First, a theoretical framework is provided to help in the characterisation of reputational risks and how they impact supply chain members that may be multiple tiers away from the manufacturer. Then, semi-structured interviews were conducted with practitioners who were familiar with reputational risks and who were engaging in varying mitigating techniques. Cognitive modelling was utilised to report the findings.

Findings

The practitioners in this paper were very familiar with the risks and were active in varying mitigating practices as budgets and resource constraints would allow. The brevity of the risks identified and the significance of specific risks with how they impact a reputation was revealed. Mitigation is an ongoing and haphazard process with very little information available as would be expected with a typical risk management approach.

Research limitations/implications

This paper serves to provide practitioners insight into the varying methods used by firms with supply chain members that number in hundreds. Based on our findings, a recommendation was made that utilise corporate social responsibility as a foundation that is proposed to address a number of risks including those related to price, availability and quality. The limits of this work are that it is specific to a select group of practitioners specialised in this area. Although the information is rich, it is not generalisable.

Originality/value

This paper makes a significant contribution to the literature by providing insight into the perceptions of practitioners who make decisions on mitigating reputational risks. The results suggest that this is a very new area of management that is striving to find a way to minimise their exposure.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 20 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2006

Grahame Dowling

The purpose of this paper is to outline the major sources of risk to a company's reputation that a board of directors should take responsibility for monitoring.

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4577

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to outline the major sources of risk to a company's reputation that a board of directors should take responsibility for monitoring.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper looks at numerous corporate scandals around the world in the last decade which have highlighted that many boards of directors were unaware of some deep‐seated problems in their companies. Thus, their lack of diligence contributed in part to their company's loss of reputation.

Findings

The paper finds that when a board of directors takes formal responsibility for the overall health of its company's reputation, two things generally happen. One is that the various board sub‐committees look for the impact on corporate reputation of their decisions. The other is that corporate reputation becomes a key performance indicator of the company's executive management team.

Originality/value

This paper acts as a “call to arms” to boards of directors to put corporate reputation on the formal corporate governance agenda. The significance of this “signal” is that it notifies all employees of the importance of creating and maintaining a good corporate reputation.

Details

Journal of Business Strategy, vol. 27 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0275-6668

Keywords

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