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  1. The Regulatory Dynamics of Sustainable Finance: Paradoxical Success and Limitations of EU Reforms.Hanna Ahlström & David Monciardini - 2022 - Journal of Business Ethics 177 (1):193-212.
    The financial sector has seen a transformation towards ‘sustainable’ finance particularly in Europe, driven also by unprecedented regulatory reforms. At the same time, many are sceptical about the real impact of these reforms, fearing that they are triggering a paradoxical financialisation of sustainability. Building on recent research on institutional logics and institutional fields formation, we examine changes in the EU regulatory dynamics as characterised by shifts in framing the relationship between sustainability and finance. Deploying a longitudinal approach, consisting of archival (...)
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  • Mission Accomplished? Reflecting on 60 Years of Business & Society.Martina Linnenluecke, Layla Branicki & Stephen Brammer - 2022 - Business and Society 61 (5):980-1041.
    Business & Society’s 60th anniversary affords an opportunity to reflect on the journal’s achievements in the context of the wider field. We analyze editorial commentaries to map the evolving mission of the journal, assess the achievement of the journal’s mission through a thematic analysis of published articles, and examine Business & Society’s distinctiveness relative to peer journals using a machine learning approach. Our analysis highlights subtle shifts in Business & Society’s mission and content over time, reflecting variation in the relative (...)
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  • Factors Leadind Corporations to Continue.Marius Gavrila & Radu-Marius Gavrila - 2019 - Dissertation, Walden University
    Accountability for corporate social responsibility (CSR) and its societal challenges is undetermined, and it is unclear whether business or society should carry these responsibilities. Despite severe criticism from some, many organizations continue to invest in and promote CSR. The purpose of this multiple-case study was to increase the understanding of the phenomenon from the perspective of a purposeful sample of participants who contribute to CSR execution and who were representatives of the 10 organizations identified as active promoters. The participant corporations (...)
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  • Elevating the Role of Divestment in Socially Responsible Investing.Cedric E. Dawkins - 2018 - Journal of Business Ethics 153 (2):465-478.
    The divest movement has focused attention on strategic and ethical differences in the practice of socially responsible investing and highlighted an unnecessary bifurcation of best-of-class engagement and divestment. Although best-of-class engagement is favored as a contemporary and pragmatic approach, this paper calls for a more pronounced recognition of absolute dealbreakers and divestment as an underpinning for best-of-class engagement. After linking divestment and best-of-class engagement to their foundations of absolutism and relativism, respectively, I critique best-of-class engagement and argue that without a (...)
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  • Legitimation Strategies as Valuable Signals in Nonfinancial Reporting? Effects on Investor Decision-Making.Barbara E. Weißenberger, Madeleine Feder, Peter Kotzian, Daniel Reimsbach & Rüdiger Hahn - 2021 - Business and Society 60 (4):943-978.
    Companies disclosing negative aspects in sustainability reports often employ legitimation strategies to present mishaps in a favorable light. In incentivized experiments, we find that nonprofessional investors divest from companies with a negative sustainability-related incident, and that symbolic legitimation is not a strong enough signal to counter this divestment behavior. Even substantial legitimation mitigates the divestment decisions only if the company reports on concrete remediation actions in morally charged situations, such as social or environmental incidents. We elaborate these results in light (...)
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  • The Influence of Firm Size on the ESG Score: Corporate Sustainability Ratings Under Review.Samuel Drempetic, Christian Klein & Bernhard Zwergel - 2020 - Journal of Business Ethics 167 (2):333-360.
    The concept of sustainable and responsible investments expresses that every investment should be based on the SR investor’s code of ethics. To a large extent the allocation of SR investments to more sustainable companies and ethical practices is based on the environmental, social, and corporate governance scores provided by rating agencies. However, a thorough investigation of ESG scores is a neglected topic in the literature. This paper uses Thomson Reuters ASSET4 ESG ratings to analyze the influence of firm size, a (...)
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  • The Elephant in the Room: The Nascent Research Agenda on Corporations, Social Responsibility, and Capitalism.Christopher Wickert, Laura J. Spence, Dirk Matten & Frank G. A. de Bakker - 2020 - Business and Society 59 (7):1295-1302.
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  • Corporate Governance as a Key Driver of Corporate Sustainability in France: The Role of Board Members and Investor Relations.Patricia Crifo, Elena Escrig-Olmedo & Nicolas Mottis - 2019 - Journal of Business Ethics 159 (4):1127-1146.
    This paper examines the relationships between corporate governance and corporate sustainability by focusing on two main components of companies’ governance structure: boards of directors and investor relations officers. We propose an original empirical strategy based on the 120 biggest French capitalizations for the year 2013, allowing us to measure boards of directors’ independence and expertise, as well as investor relations officers’ convictions and communication on corporate sustainability. Our results show that corporate governance has an ambiguous impact on corporate sustainability because (...)
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  • How Do Companies Respond to Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Ratings? Evidence From Italy.Ester Clementino & Richard Perkins - 2020 - Journal of Business Ethics 171 (2):379-397.
    While a growing number of firms are being evaluated on environment, social and governance criteria by sustainability rating agencies, comparatively little is known about companies’ responses. Drawing on semi-structured interviews with companies operating in Italy, the present paper seeks to narrow this gap in current understanding by examining how firms react to ESG ratings, and the factors influencing their response. Unique to the literature, we show that firms may react very differently to being rated, with our analysis yielding a fourfold (...)
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  • Does an Asset Owner’s Institutional Setting Influence Its Decision to Sign the Principles for Responsible Investment?Andreas G. F. Hoepner, Arleta A. A. Majoch & Xiao Y. Zhou - 2021 - Journal of Business Ethics 168 (2):389-414.
    From a simple idea to unite asset owners in their quest for responsible investment at its launch in April 2006, the United Nations supported Principles for Responsible Investment have grown in just one decade into an initiative with more than 1500 fee-paying signatories. Jointly, the PRI’s signatories hold assets worth more than $80 trillion, making it one of the more prevalent not-for-profit organizations worldwide. Furthermore, the PRI’s ambitious mission to transform the financial system at large into a more sustainable one (...)
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  • A Stakeholder Theory Perspective on Business Models: Value Creation for Sustainability.Birte Freudenreich, Florian Lüdeke-Freund & Stefan Schaltegger - 2020 - Journal of Business Ethics 166 (1):3-18.
    Business models are developed and managed to create value. While most business model frameworks envision value creation as a uni-directional flow between the focal business and its customers, this article presents a broader view based on a stringent application of stakeholder theory. It provides a stakeholder value creation framework derived from key characteristics of stakeholder theory. This article highlights mutual stakeholder relationships in which stakeholders are both recipients and creators of value in joint value creation processes. Key findings include that (...)
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