Session 15

Human Factors in Stakeholder Strategy

Track M

Date: Monday, October 8, 2012


Time: 09:30 – 10:45


Room: Meeting Room 2.2

Session Chair:

  • Jared Harris, University of Virginia

Title: Commitment To and From Stakeholders


  • Doug Bosse, University of Richmond
  • Richard Coughlan, University of Richmond

Abstract: This paper argues commitment is an important feature in the nature of – and the value created through – the relationships among firms and their stakeholders. The commitment construct, well established in psychology, organizational behavior, and marketing, includes normative obligation as well as binding choice. Building from this research foundation, we will develop reasoning to explain (1) how commitment helps further articulate the process of managing for stakeholders, (2) how commitments from internal and external stakeholders likely differ, and (3) how a firm’s commitments towards its stakeholders – internal and external – are likely characterized. The answers to these questions have the potential to contribute meaningful insights into the nature of economic organization and the theory of the firm.

Title: Stakeholder Engagement: Unbundling the Capability and the Factors that Explain its Appearance


  • Luis Fernando Escobar, University of Lethbridge
  • Harrie Vredenburg, University of Calgary

Abstract: This study is concerned with unbundling a capability, stakeholder engagement, and then identifying the factors that lead to its development at the business unit level within a multinational corporation. We argue that stakeholder engagement is an organizational capability or bundle of practices that is developed local-ly by the business unit to govern its relationships with stakeholder—a location-bound firm specific ad-vantage. We argue that the appearance of the capability for stakeholder engagement is conditioned by local factors (intermediary organizations, organized communities), subsidiary factors (presence of a champion for social issues, accountability and clear business case for stakeholder engagement) and cor-porate factors (level of autonomy and parent company involvement on social issues).

Title: Stakeholders’ Attitudes, Media Accounts, and Stakeholder Trust in Business: An Empirical Study


  • Jared Harris, University of Virginia
  • Adrian Keevil, University of Virginia
  • Andrew Wicks, University of Virginia

Abstract: Recent populist sentiment suggests a crisis of goodwill-based trust in business as an institution. This study will explore the connection between different stakeholder perspectives and trust in the institution of business; in addition, the study will analyze the role of media accounts in shaping trusting attitudes. Using a randomly assigned sample of international participants and a 5X5 between subjects design, we will empirically explore the connection between stakeholder role, media accounts, and goodwill-based trust in the institution of business. Preliminary results suggest that media accounts have an appreciable effect on trusting attitudes, yet potentially impact various stakeholder perspectives (e.g. customer, employee, investor) differently.

Title: Understanding Anticipatory Impression Management by Organizations


  • Kevin Cain, Augusta University
  • Scott Graffin, University of Georgia
  • Donald Lange, Arizona State University

Abstract: In this conceptual paper, we direct attention to a relatively understudied type of organizational impression management—that which occurs before the event expected to trigger negative reactions has been revealed to stakeholders. We build on the idea that, in this anticipatory period, stakeholders are not yet biased by the triggering event or by organizational attempts to manipulate their reactions. Further, we describe how this period is characterized by certain unknowns relevant to impression management, since an organization’s leaders must estimate whether stakeholders will become aware of the trigger, whether the organization will be blamed, and how negative the reactions will be. Our theory provides a systematic approach to understanding how characteristics of the anticipatory period can affect how an organization’s leaders approach anticipatory impression management.

All Sessions in Track M...

Sun: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 126: Entrepreneurship & Stakeholders - The Future Research Agenda
Sun: 11:15 – 12:30
Session 276: Performance Measurement Tools: A Review of Progress
Mon: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 106: Why do Firms do Bad Things and What Do We Know about It?
Mon: 09:30 – 10:45
Session 15: Human Factors in Stakeholder Strategy
Mon: 13:30 – 14:45
Session 12: Effective Stakeholder Management
Session 138: Value Creation & Appropriation: Take the money and run
Mon: 16:30 – 17:45
Session 113: Large Shareholders are Doing it for Themselves
Tue: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 11: Stakeholders and Corporate Social Performance
Tue: 11:00 – 12:15
Session 117: Heterogeneous Owner Types and their Influence
Tue: 14:15 – 15:30
Session 182: Challenges for Stakeholder Management
Tue: 15:45 – 17:00
Session 10: Stakeholders and Crisis Performance
Tue: 17:30 – 18:45
Session 13: The Problem of Performance in the Theory of the Firm:

Strategic Management Society