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1. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
About These Proceedings
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2. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Joy E. Beatty, Jennifer S. A. Leigh, Jegoo Lee Go Big or Go Home: Big Data Analytics for Big Business & Society
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Big data analysis is sweeping the natural sciences, industry, and the digital humanities, but what about business and society? The purpose of this session is to facilitate a conversation about the relationship of big data and data science analytics and their relevance to the business and society community in our roles as researchers, reviewers, editors, and scholars. We will discuss the benefits and challenges of big data analysis, and comparisons of big data methods with traditional quantitative and qualitative methods. We will offer a brief example of a topic modelling analysis, and will invite participants to consider the possibilities for using big data analysis in their business and society research.
3. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Frederik Dahlmann, Johanne Ward-Grosvold Environmental Managers and Organisational Ambidexterity
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This paper develops the outlines of a research proposal asking how do environmental managers engage in organisational ambidexterity in order to bridge the competing institutional logics defining and affecting their roles and practices? Drawing on a conceptual framework of organisational ambidexterity we seek to explore how environmental managers manage the competing institutional logics defining and affecting their roles and practices. Using qualitative inductive analysis on interviews with a multitude of UK firms undertaken at the height of the global financial crisis, we plan to examine the organizational capabilities required for dealing with the ethical and strategic trade-offs between meeting economic and ecological organizational objectives, and thus address questions around how companies can move from ambition to more lasting impact.
4. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
D. Kirk Davidson Employee Rights in a 3-D CSR World
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This paper explores the dramatic changes in the employer-employee relationship over the past several decades and the implications for the concept of employee rights.
5. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Robbin Derry Intersectional Feminist Ethics in an Era of Gender Fluidity
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The fields of applied and professional ethics have accepted the Ethics of Care as the definitive feminist ethics for nearly three decades. Feminism has moved on to embrace the intersectional study of gender, race, and class in identifying key issues and methods, but scholarship in business ethics has not yet adopted intersectional feminism. Further, our understanding of gender is rapidly shifting. Whereas second wave feminism was articulated on the basis of widely accepted norms of gender as a dichotomous variable, gender is now understood to be less essential, more fluid, and entirely socially constructed. This raises challenging questions about what feminism represents, and therefore what feminist ethics is.
6. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Virginia W. Gerde, Jonathan Handy, D.J. Masson Are Hedge Funds The Big, Bad Wolf?
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In general, hedge fund activist investors primarily seek to increase their equity value; however, such actions can arise from other intentions and can result in unforeseen consequences. We examine how hedge fund activism during the 1994-2007 period has impacted US companies and their subsequent environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance. Specifically, we compare prior company ESG performance with that occurring after being targeted by a hedge fund activist investor. We use ESG ratings in a panel data analysis with stakeholder dimensions of the natural environment, the community, diversity, employees, consumers, and specific governance elements. For those firms targeted by hedge fund activists, we found that the number of environmental concerns decreased while the number of corporate governance strengths increased. Social performance was generally worse after being targeted, as targeted firms had fewer strengths in the employee, community, and product dimensions and more concerns in the employee and diversity dimensions.
7. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Virginia W. Gerde, J. Aaron Simmons Where Do We Go From Here: How do Recent Political and Economic Changes Affect Our Ambitions and Impacts as Business and Society Scholars?
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Two 2016 events highlighted the rise of nationalism: (1) the election of Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election, and (2) Brexit, the UK vote to withdraw from the European Union. We as scholars and teachers and our students as global citizens entering the workforce were and are experiencing increased political and social tensions in both hemispheres and amplified uncertainty. In this presentation, we sought to open a dialogue on the language we use in business and society research and teaching as well as the underlying, often unmentioned, assumptions underlying our studies and pedagogy.
8. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Jean-Pascal Gond, Sébastien Mena, Szilvia Mosonyi Meta-Reviewing the Business and Society Field through Sociological Paradigms: Towards Pluralistic Re-Presentations of Corporate Social Responsibility
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Although the growth of the field of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) calls for more diverse exercises of reviewing, most reviews of CSR research present the organising categories on which they build as taken-for-granted. In so doing, they reify a structural-functionalist orientation and a linear view of time while failing to represent accurately alternative post-structural and anti-structural CSR paradigms. Building on an analysis of 40 reviews of the CSR field and on insights from the social studies of science, this paper revisits the notion of field re-presentation and highlights the need for building on categories, which embed a richer set of ontological assumptions to represent the CSR field in a manner that could maintain a dose of ontological and epistemological pluralism and diversity. We finally discuss the implications of our analysis to enhance CSR theory-building, cross-fertilize insights from distinct CSR paradigms and develop alternative assumptions to investigate empirically CSR phenomena.
9. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Jean-Pascal Gond, Laurence Vigneau How Do Measures Become Academically Acceptable?: A Case Study of the Kinder Lydenberg and Domini (KLD) database
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Although measurement is central to knowledge production, little is known about the process by which a dataset becomes accepted by academics as an appropriate way of measuring a phenomenon. Relying on actor-network theory and prior studies of the construction of organizational knowledge, and using the Kinder Lydenberg and Domini (KLD) database as a case, we analyze the activities that enabled the adoption of this dataset. Informed by a systematic content analysis of 573 articles referring to KLD and interviews with KLD experts, we develop a process model that explains how datasets become accepted in academia and linked to theoretical concepts. In making visible the practical, symbolic and conceptual work that underlie a dataset adoption in academia, we show how academics can potentially be influenced by practitioners through metrics. Our findings also highlight the importance of reflexivity and mindfulness in the use of datasets.
10. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Jason Good, Paloma Vargas, Blanca Lopez, Bryan W. Husted The Voice of History: What Can the Ancient Aztecs Tell Us About Universal Business Norms?
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This study explores the role of history in establishing the universality of business norms, which is largely missing from the Integrated Social Contracts Theory literature. We apply a grounded theory methodology to business-oriented parts of The Florentine Codex, which documents a 16th century study of Nahua society (of which the Aztecs were a part). In doing so we derive six business norms operating in 16th century Nahua society: ‘care for others,’ ‘exercise prudence,’ ‘tell the truth,’ ‘be respectful of others,’ ‘show reverence to the gods,’ and ‘be humble.’ From these findings we discuss relationships between these norms and the norms operating in current-day global business society, and argue that studies of universal norms should account for the role of time in establishing their universality.
11. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Sonja Grabner-Kräuter, Adele Santana Biodynamic Certification Processes Advancing the Sustainability Agenda in the Wine Industry: A Comparative Study of Two Producing Regions
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The present study explores the impact of the broader environment, the internal and business contexts, and organizational resources on wineries’ decision to become biodynamic certified. We look at, respectively, the respekt-BIODYN certification in Austria and the Demeter certification in Sonoma, CA. Through in-depth, semi-structured interviews with wine industry experts in both countries, we collected data on the reasons why wineries adopt biodynamic practices and become certified; how vintners balance the economic, ecological and social pillars of sustainability; the benefits and challenges of biodynamic farming; to what extent vintners communicate biodynamic practices to consumers; how vintners assess consumers’ attributions of value to biodynamic wines and consumers’ purchase decisions. Results indicate that, although wineries’ motives to become biodynamic certified and the processes they embrace in order to achieve this goal are quite different in the two regions, consumer reactions to certified-biodynamic wines to this date have been similar.
12. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Anne Barraquier, Mark Bender, Bruce Klaw, Donald Mayer, John Holcomb Innovations in Teaching Business Ethics and Business & Society
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This symposium discusses the challenges of teaching in a global environment, to students of different languages and nationalities, using cases and materials that have an Anglo-Saxon bias, and to extremely large classes that require innovative techniques, including use of social media. The symposium also addresses the value of blending traditional teaching approaches with ways to stimulate student interaction, to address the most vital ethical issues in the context of the latest cases. It also addresses ways of integrating ethics and sustainability into traditional functional courses, along with the need to adopt new courses and programs in the face of declining enrollments in traditional MBA programs. The symposium also addresses novel techniques and exercises to enhance student interaction and individual accountability, through the use of case debates and projects.
13. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Jacqueline L. Kirk Participant value perceptions of CR Index measurement: A lifecycle of diminishing value
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This paper explores perceptions of value in the evolution of a corporate responsibility index over a 15 year history. Based on documentary evidence and interview data, the paper proposes a ‘linear value journey’ model whereby the perceived value of the tool diminishes over time in line with the passage through internal to external value perceptions. The aim of this paper is to bring this lifecycle process together within the central streams of research in CR Index measurement to bridge the gap between theory and practice and generate knowledge that can be applied in evolving CR measurement in the future and to further our theoretical understanding of the nature of such tools.
14. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Denise Kleinrichert, Geoff Desa, Caterina Tantalo Called To Act: Exploring The Antecedent Role Of Calling In Social Entrepreneurship
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This paper develops an analysis of the role of individual, meaningful calling to act as a social entrepreneur with a mission to affect positive social impacts in communities. We analyzed anonymous survey data from a mixed methods study of social entrepreneurs from across a variety of global social mission enterprises. Our survey provided specific responses to individual calling and purpose related to affective, cognitive and meaningful work.
15. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Nancy B. Kurland, Norm Bishara, Philip L. Cochran, Barrie Litzky, Ian D. MacFarlane Research and Teaching of Benefit Corporations
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In this symposium, panelists presented research on benefit corporations and certified b corps. In the last decade, new incorporation laws have emerged in several states that explicitly allow firms to pursue both social purpose and profit. Panelists presented an overview of alternative incorporation statutes, evaluated the degree to which companies are externally accountable, and hold themselves internally accountable, to a broader social purpose. The panel also discussed strategies for teaching about certified b corps in the classroom. Finally, the plenary discussion centered on two themes: Is a need for a legally mandated broader social purpose an American problem? Is the benefit corporate structure going to get us where we need to be?
16. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Nancy B. Kurland, Sandra Waddock, Dawn Elm, Jamie Hendry, John Hulpke What Does Corporate Responsibility Mean in a Trumpian World?
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In this symposium, presenters discussed the challenges Donald Trump’s presidency has wrought on democracy, the natural environment, justice, and everything else liberals hold dear. Presenters further observed that the corporations, local and state governments, non-governmental organizations, and others have begun to fill the gap to address issues of climate change and responsibility in general. Following the short presentations, we engaged in a lively plenary discussion. Themes raised centered on understanding why Trump happened and what change he represents; how corporations are responding, and whether corporate responsiveness is a good thing; how Trump affects the academy, and how as members of the academy, we can impact students; and how we can and should change the larger social narrative.
17. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Jennifer S. A. Leigh, Joy E. Beatty, Cedric Dawkins, Ranjini Swamy, Roz Sunley Global Dispatches: Action Reporting on Responsible Management Education
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This session used a news report framework to discuss emerging and perennial challenges and opportunities for business and society scholars in the classroom. For this innovative program session, we adopted a narrowcasting approach that transmitted information relevant to a small and focused audience of responsible management (RME) scholars who share an interest in best practices in our business and society classes across all disciplines. The metaphor of the newscast aimed to convey that responsible management education is a dynamic and newsworthy area. We addressed two main conference questions: 1) What role has our field played in the way business managers and our students view business? and 2) What must we do as a community of scholars in our research, teaching, and service to strengthen the important institutions in our society?
18. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Patsy G. Lewellyn, Jeanne M. Logsdon Global Reporting Initiative G4 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines: Do They Deliver?
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This study extends prior research on the impact of the 2013 G4 disclosure requirements, issued by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), in the mining and metals sector. Content analysis is used to longitudinally analyze the sustainability reports of mining companies in diverse geographical locations to determine the extent to which the content of reporting has changed over time, and we begin to analyze how each company is adhering to G4 Guidelines by its second reporting iteration. We also identify challenges for researchers who use sustainability reports as a source for data.
19. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Patsy G. Lewellyn, C. Michael Ritchie, David Harrison, Michele Harmon Does Sustainability Assurance Measure Up?: A Critical Analysis
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This study reports the analysis and critique of assurance provided on sustainability reports published in 2016 in the mining industry. Sustainability assurance is compared to independent assurance on financial reporting. Findings indicate that sustainability assurance fails to add credibility to sustainability reports due to lack of consistent assurance and reporting standards employed. Additionally, assurance on sustainability reports tends to provide only limited assurance on selected performance data, to primarily internal audiences.
20. Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society: 2017
Daina Mazutis, Anna Eckardt Getting boards on board: Investigating the corporate sustainability imperative and implementation gap
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Strategic leadership and corporate governance scholars have long been interested in the relationship between a company’s board of directors and firm performance – primarily financial, and increasingly social and environmental performance as well. To date, research on the board-performance link, especially in the domain of ethics, responsibility or sustainability (ERS), has concentrated almost exclusively on board structural, demographic or ownership factors arguing from an agency theory perspective that increased board independence will result in more effective CEO and TMT monitoring as well as better strategic guidance. And yet, many reputable corporations with exemplary corporate governance structures continue to make questionable strategic decisions (e.g. Volkswagen emission scandal; Exxon climate change denial). As such, this research seeks to go beyond descriptive corporate governance approaches to understand exactly how boards of directors are dealing with ERS issues from a strategic decision-making perspective. We present a theoretical model that we aim to explore through qualitative interviews with board members thereby contributing to the corporate governance and sustainability literatures by elucidating on the mechanisms by which board decision-making processes affect firm performance.