Stakeholder theory, society and social cohesion

Stakeholder theory, society and social cohesion Stakeholder theory is a "weak" theory, which suffers from a number of flaws. This article is based on the intuition that many of these problems are linked together, and that they are fundamentally due to the fact that stakeholder theory fails to appreciate the place of civil society as a stakeholder. It starts with an examination of the confusing status of society in stakeholder theory, and suggests that civil society should be on top of the stakeholder list. It then underlines the emergence of a global society, distinct from national societies. An extended classification system is presented, which comprises a binary categorization, an intermediate taxonomy, and a developed typology; this system is illustrated in the form of a mapping. The article then addresses the issue of the theory's normative underpinnings: the concept of social cohesion is proposed as an alternative justification. The meaning of this concept is specified, and its relevance as a normative foundation is justified. Eventually, this reinterpretation of stakeholder theory, which emphasizes the importance of civil society and social cohesion, provides some rationales for the connection of its empirical and normative streams - thus rendering it more consistent and more robust. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Corporate Governance Emerald Publishing

Stakeholder theory, society and social cohesion

Corporate Governance, Volume 5 (2): 12 – Apr 1, 2005

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1472-0701
D.O.I.
10.1108/14720700510562640
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Stakeholder theory is a "weak" theory, which suffers from a number of flaws. This article is based on the intuition that many of these problems are linked together, and that they are fundamentally due to the fact that stakeholder theory fails to appreciate the place of civil society as a stakeholder. It starts with an examination of the confusing status of society in stakeholder theory, and suggests that civil society should be on top of the stakeholder list. It then underlines the emergence of a global society, distinct from national societies. An extended classification system is presented, which comprises a binary categorization, an intermediate taxonomy, and a developed typology; this system is illustrated in the form of a mapping. The article then addresses the issue of the theory's normative underpinnings: the concept of social cohesion is proposed as an alternative justification. The meaning of this concept is specified, and its relevance as a normative foundation is justified. Eventually, this reinterpretation of stakeholder theory, which emphasizes the importance of civil society and social cohesion, provides some rationales for the connection of its empirical and normative streams - thus rendering it more consistent and more robust.

Journal

Corporate GovernanceEmerald Publishing

Published: Apr 1, 2005

Keywords: Stakeholders; Management theory

References

  • Transformed corporate community relations: a management tool for achieving corporate citizenship
    Altman, B.W.

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