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Article

Luc Fransen, Ans Kolk and Miguel Rivera-Santos

This paper aims to examine the multiplicity of corporate social responsibility (CSR) standards, explaining its nature, dynamics and implications for multinational…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the multiplicity of corporate social responsibility (CSR) standards, explaining its nature, dynamics and implications for multinational enterprises (MNEs) and international business (IB), especially in the context of CSR and global value chain (GVC) governance.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper leverages insights from the literature in political science, policy, regulation, governance and IB; from the own earlier work; and from an inventory of CSR standards across a range of sectors and products.

Findings

This analysis’ more nuanced approach to CSR standard multiplicity helps distinguish the different categories of standards; uncovers the existence of different types of standard multiplicity; and highlights complex trends in their evolution over time, discussing implications for the various firms targeted by, or involved in, these initiatives, and for CSR and GVC governance research.

Research limitations/implications

This paper opens many avenues for future research on CSR multiplicity and its consequences; on lead firms governing GVCs from an IB perspective; and on institutional and market complexity.

Practical implications

By providing overviews and classifications, this paper helps clarify CSR standards as “new regulators” and “instruments” for actors in business, society and government.

Originality/value

This paper contributes by filling gaps in different existing literatures concerning standard multiplicity. It also specifically adds a new perspective to the IB literature, which thus far has not fully incorporated the complexity and dynamics of CSR standard multiplicity in examining GVCs and MNE strategy and policy.

Details

Multinational Business Review, vol. 27 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1525-383X

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Article

Michal J Carrington, Ben Neville and Robin Canniford

This study aims to explore: consumer experiences of intense moral dilemma arising from identity multiplicity conflict, expressed in the marketplace, which demand stark…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to explore: consumer experiences of intense moral dilemma arising from identity multiplicity conflict, expressed in the marketplace, which demand stark moral choices and consumer response to intensely felt moral tension where their sense of coherent moral self is at stake.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors gathered ethnographic data from amongst ethical consumers, and theorised the data through theory of life projects and life themes to explain how multiplicity can become an unmanageable problem in the midst of moral dilemma.

Findings

The authors reveal that in contrast to notions of liberating or manageable multiplicity conflict, some consumers experience intense moral anxiety that is unmanageable. The authors find that this unmanageable moral tension can provoke consumers to transform self and consumption choices to construct a coherent moral self. The authors identify this transformation as the meta life project.

Research limitations/implications

This work contributes to knowledge of multiplicity, consumer life themes and life projects, moral dilemma and ethical consumption by showing that some experiences of moral anxiety arising from multiplicity conflict are unmanageable, and these consumers seek moral self re-unification through the meta life project.

Practical implications

This study provides practical guidance to companies, marketers, public organisations and activist groups seeking to understand and harness consumers’ moral codes to promote ethical consumption practices.

Originality/value

The authors extend current theory of multiplicity into the moral domain to illustrate limitations of framing consumer experiences of multiplicity conflict as being either liberating or manageable when consumers’ sense of moral self is at stake. This article is of interest to academic, marketing practitioner and public policy audiences.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 49 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

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Book part

Anna Nöteberg and James E. Hunton

Face-to-face meetings between auditors and clients are becoming increasingly more difficult and expensive to arrange, due in large part to the ceaseless expansion of…

Abstract

Face-to-face meetings between auditors and clients are becoming increasingly more difficult and expensive to arrange, due in large part to the ceaseless expansion of commerce across the globe. Relying on electronic communication media such as e-mail messaging or video-conferencing for auditor–client inquiry purposes is one way to enhance the timeliness of such communications; however, questions arise with respect to potentially biasing influences of certain technical aspects of electronic media on auditors’ judgment and decision-making processes. Drawing on information processing theories, the current study posits that media and message attributes can interact, thereby differentially affecting auditors’ belief revisions – holding information content constant. The media attributes examined in the current study are cue multiplicity (i.e., the range of central and peripheral cues a medium is capable of transmitting) and message reprocessability (i.e., the extent of archival and retrieval features a medium is capable of handling); and the message attribute studied is evidence strength (e.g., the credibility of client-provided evidence). Research findings from a laboratory experiment with 189 graduate accounting students indicate the following: (1) when client-provided evidence is strong, neither message reprocessability nor cue multiplicity significantly affect the auditors’ belief revisions; (2) when evidence is weak and reprocessability is present, higher cue multiplicity leads to significantly greater belief revision in favor of the client; (3) when evidence is weak and reprocessability is absent, lower cue multiplicity results in significantly greater belief revision in favor of the client. Study results suggest theoretical and practical implications for globally distributed auditor–client communications.

Details

Advances in Accounting Behavioral Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-218-4

Abstract

Details

Rethinking Ethics Through Hypertext
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-426-7

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Article

Annie Isabel Fukushima, Kwynn Gonzalez-Pons, Lindsay Gezinski and Lauren Clark

The purpose of this study is to contribute to the social understanding of stigma as a societal and cultural barrier in the life of a survivor of human trafficking. The…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to contribute to the social understanding of stigma as a societal and cultural barrier in the life of a survivor of human trafficking. The findings illustrate several ways where stigma is internal, interpersonal and societal and impacts survivors’ lives, including the care they receive.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used qualitative methods. Data collection occurred during 2018 with efforts such as an online survey (n = 45), focus groups (two focus groups of seven participants each) and phone interviews (n = 6). This study used thematic analysis of qualitative data.

Findings

The research team found that a multiplicity of stigma occurred for the survivors of human trafficking, where stigma occurred across three levels from micro to meso to macro contexts. Using interpretive analysis, the researchers conceptualized how stigma is not singular; rather, it comprises the following: bias in access to care; barriers of shaming, shunning and othering; misidentification and mislabeling; multiple levels of furthering how survivors are deeply misunderstood and a culture of mistrust.

Research limitations/implications

While this study was conducted in a single US city, it provides an opportunity to create dialogue and appeal for more research that will contend with a lens of seeing a multiplicity of stigma regardless of the political climate of the context. It was a challenge to recruit survivors to participate in the study. However, survivor voices are present in this study and the impetus of the study’s focus was informed by survivors themselves. Finally, this study is informed by the perspectives of researchers who are not survivors; moreover, collaborating with survivor researchers at the local level was impossible because there were no known survivor researchers available to the team.

Practical implications

There are clinical responses to the narratives of stigma that impact survivors’ lives, but anti-trafficking response must move beyond individualized expectations to include macro responses that diminish multiple stigmas. The multiplicity in stigmas has meant that, in practice, survivors are invisible at all levels of response from micro, meso to macro contexts. Therefore, this study offers recommendations for how anti-trafficking responders may move beyond a culture of stigma towards a response that addresses how stigma occurs in micro, meso and macro contexts.

Social implications

The social implications of examining stigma as a multiplicity is central to addressing how stigma continues to be an unresolved issue in anti-trafficking response. Advancing the dynamic needs of survivors both in policy and practice necessitates responding to the multiple and overlapping forms of stigma they face in enduring and exiting exploitative conditions, accessing services and integrating back into the community.

Originality/value

This study offers original analysis of how stigma manifested for the survivors of human trafficking. Building on this dynamic genealogy of scholarship on stigma, this study offers a theory to conceptualize how survivors of human trafficking experience stigma: a multiplicity of stigma. A multiplicity of stigma extends existing research on stigma and human trafficking as occurring across three levels from micro, meso to macro contexts and creating a system of oppression. Stigma cannot be reduced to a singular form; therefore, this study argues that survivors cannot be understood as experiencing a singular form of stigma.

Details

International Journal of Human Rights in Healthcare, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-4902

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Article

Nicholas J. Rowland and Matthew J. Spaniol

This paper asks “Why is the future in futures studies plural?” The attitude toward inquiry, based on post-actor-network theory (ANT) literature, positions philosophical…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper asks “Why is the future in futures studies plural?” The attitude toward inquiry, based on post-actor-network theory (ANT) literature, positions philosophical questions about the ontological character of the future within the context of “planning” for it (i.e. in practice). Multiplicity, as a post-ANT sensibility, helps one make sense of the empirical materials. This paper examines the possibility that rather than being alternatives to one another, plural futures and the singular future might co-exist in practice, and, thus, constitute a multiplicity.

Design/methodology/approach

In this case study, “planning” is narrative scenario planning. The second author facilitates dialogue-based long-term strategic scenario planning processes, primarily in Scandinavia and Northern Europe, and contributes a wealth of professional experience to the project. The first author, an academic, shadows the second author. This paper examines experiential and observational data for evidence of the ontological character of the future. Elements of a typical scenario planning process, in this case, about the possibility of crewless (i.e. unmanned) shipping vessels are demonstrated – although, insight into the crewless ship is submerged by our analytical attentiveness to the ontology of the future.

Findings

The findings bear on what sort of “object” the future is. Practices associated with planning for the future appear to transform it so that one future becomes many, and, without irony, managing the growing number of futures seems to be a core function of planning for the future. The implication is that neither plural futures nor the singular future is – individually – satisfactory to capture what is found in practice. It is both plural and singular; ontologically, it is the future multiple.

Originality/value

The original contribution is in demonstrating how plural futures and the singular future co-exist in practice. Thus, an eclipse of the future by futures can only ever be partial. For “futures” to be conceptually potent, “the future” must be at least provisionally believable and occasionally useful. Otherwise, if “the future” were so preposterous an idea, then “futures” would cease to be a critical alternative to it. Futures needs the future; they are relationally bound together in a multiplicity. This paper considers what such a logical reality implies for a field that distances itself from the future and self-identifies with futures.

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Article

Shirley Leitch and Judy Motion

In this article, van Riel’s theory of common starting points is applied to an organisation in order to further our understanding of the way in which multiplicity may be…

Abstract

In this article, van Riel’s theory of common starting points is applied to an organisation in order to further our understanding of the way in which multiplicity may be managed within the corporate identity mix. The article begins by outlining the challenges that postmodern theory has posed for corporate identity theory and the contribution that van Riel’s theory can make to addressing these challenges. The theory of common starting points is then applied to the corporate identity of the Mainfreight corporation.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 4 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article

Chris Steyaert, Laurent Marti and Christoph Michels

The purpose of this paper is, first, to assess the potential of the visual to enact multiplicity and reflexivity in organizational research, and second, to develop a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is, first, to assess the potential of the visual to enact multiplicity and reflexivity in organizational research, and second, to develop a performative approach to the visual, which offers aesthetic strategies for creating future research accounts in organization and management studies.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper reviews existing visual research in organization and management studies and presents an in‐depth analysis of two early, almost classical, and yet very different endeavors to create visual accounts based on ethnography: the multi‐media enactments by Bruno Latour, Emilie Hermant, Susanna Shannon, and Patricia Reed, and the filmic and written work by Trinh T. Minh‐ha and her collaborators.

Findings

The authors’ analysis of how the visual is performed in both cases identifies a repertoire of three distinct and paradoxical aesthetic strategies: de/synchronizing, de/centralizing, and dis/covering.

Originality/value

The authors analyze two rarely acknowledged but ground‐breaking research presentations, identify aesthetic strategies to perform multiplicity and reflexivity in research accounts, and question the ways that research accounts are written and published in organization and management studies by acknowledging the consequences of a performative approach to the visual.

Details

Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management: An International Journal, vol. 7 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5648

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Book part

Achim Oberg, Gili S. Drori and Giuseppe Delmestri

Seeking an answer to the question “how does organizational identity change?” we analyze the visual identity marker of universities, namely logos, as time-related artifacts…

Abstract

Seeking an answer to the question “how does organizational identity change?” we analyze the visual identity marker of universities, namely logos, as time-related artifacts embodying visual scripts. Engaging with the Stinchcombe hypothesis, we identify five processes to the creation of visual identities of organizations: In addition to (1) imprinting (enactment of the contemporary script) and (2) imprinting-cum-inertia (persistent enactment of epochal scripts), we also identify (3) renewal (enactment of an up-to-date epochal script), (4) historization (enactment of a recovered older epochal script), and (5) multiplicity (simultaneous enactment of multiple epochal scripts). We argue that these processes work together to produce contemporary heterogeneity of visualized identity narratives of universities. We illustrate this, first, with a survey of the current-day logos of 814 university emblems in 20 countries from across the world. Second, drawing on archival and interview materials, we analyze the histories of exemplar university logos to illustrate the various time-related processes. Therefore, by interjecting history – as both time and process – into the analysis of the visualization of organizational identity, we both join with the phenomenological and semiotic analysis of visual material as well as demonstrate that history is not merely a fixed factor echoing imprinting and inertia but rather also includes several forms of engagement with temporality that are less deterministic. Overall, we argue that enactment engages with perceptions of time (imaginations of the past, present, and future) and with perceptions fixed by time (epochal imprinting and inertia) to produce heterogeneity in the visualization of organizational identity.

Details

Multimodality, Meaning, and Institutions
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-332-8

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Article

Akira Kimata

This study is founded on contingency theory, which is derived from organization theory, and in it we examine the structural problems of the modern Japanese recycling…

Abstract

This study is founded on contingency theory, which is derived from organization theory, and in it we examine the structural problems of the modern Japanese recycling business using J. D. Thompson's model of contingency theory. Based on the results of our interviews conducted with 16 companies through the nondirective method, we argue that there are multiple contingency factors in the modern Japanese recycling venture and that these factors increase uncertainty and reduce the stability of the business as a result. We conclude that as an active level of 'sub technology,' recycling businesses created as diversifications of major companies will eventually manage the multiplicity of contingency factors.

Details

International Journal of Organization Theory & Behavior, vol. 16 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1093-4537

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