Posted by: B. Scott Anderson | April 30, 2014

Company statements and stakeholders

In the Weber and Marley (2009) article, I found the fluctuation of corporate social reporting — and consequently how it’s viewed by stakeholders — pretty interesting because it seems like this would be an area to cut out from the reports (were these types of reports included in the 10Ks of companies?). I say that because when most stakeholders look at these reports, they’re looking at the bottom line (dollars and cents) to see how the company has performed because they have some vested, financial interest. Do stakeholders read these reports if they’re not financially motivated?

Anyway, it would seem like the corporate social reporting in one of these reports wouldn’t have much of an impact on the bottom line. However, I’d be willing to bet that years down the road, the goings-on in the corporate social world would play a fairly significant factor in the company’s financial health, and consequently, it would affect the stakeholders.

When it came to the results of the Weber and Marley (2009) article, I wasn’t sure how the findings would come out because my knowledge of the world of corporate social responsibility (in terms of stakeholder salience) in other countries is fairly limited, but I did think Hypothesis No. 5 would be supported by the data. When I read four of the five hypotheses were not supported by the data, it was surprising.

Ultimately, wouldn’t it be better to study actual stakeholders than what Weber and Marley did?

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