Business Ethics: A European Review 19 (1):35-49 (2010)
AbstractStakeholder theory is one of the most influential theories in business ethics. It is perhaps not surprising that a theory as popular as stakeholder theory should be used in different ways, but when the disparity between different uses becomes too great, it is questionable whether all the ‘stakeholder research’ refers to the same underlying theory. This paper starts to clarify this definitional confusion by distinguishing between three different ways in which different lines of stakeholder research are connected with descriptive and instrumental stakeholder theory. First, a distinction is made between research connected with descriptive and with instrumental stakeholder theory as defined by Donaldson & Preston in the narrow or broad sense. Second, a distinction is made between research that interprets descriptive and instrumental stakeholder theories as either hypotheses or research areas. Third, a distinction is made between research that interprets Donaldson & Preston’s central concept of ‘stakeholder management’ as either behaviour or rationale. Finally, the paper discusses the implications of these differences for empirical research into stakeholder theory.
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Citations of this work
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Leadership and Change: The Case for Greater Ethical Clarity. [REVIEW]Bernard Burnes & Rune Todnem By - 2012 - Journal of Business Ethics 108 (2):239-252.
Family Firms and the Interests of Non‐Family Stakeholders: The Influence of Family Managers' Affective Commitment and Family Salience in Terms of Power.María de la Cruz Déniz-Déniz, María Katiuska Cabrera-Suárez & Josefa D. Martín-Santana - 2018 - Business Ethics: A European Review 27 (1):15-28.
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