The September 2011 issue of Business & Society (BAS) is now available online here. This issue continues the 50th anniversary celebration volume, which includes a special section of three dissertation abstracts that were the finalists for the best dissertation award of the Social Issues in Management (SIM) Division of the Academy of Management in August 2010. Professor James Mattingly, an associate editor for BAS, and the finalists prepared articles for this section.
The lead article for this issue was published by Roberto Garcia-Castro, Miguel A. Ariño, both of IESE Business School, and Miguel A. Canela, University of Barcelona, entitled “Over the Long Run? Short-Run Impact and Long-Run Consequences of Stakeholder Management.”
The stakeholder view of the firm has been justified under instrumental and normative bases. Whereas the instrumental basis argues that “enlightened stakeholder management” is a necessary precondition to seek shareholders’ value maximization, the normative basis relies on the observance of ethical norms by managers and the notion that the stakeholders should be treated as “ends.” Some scholars argue that both views actually converge. However, this article provides empirical evidence of the negative effects of stakeholder management in shareholders’ value in the short run and the positive effects over the long run, using a longitudinal database of 658 U.S. firms. Given the difficulties of anticipating the instrumental long-term financial effects of short-run decisions affecting the different stakeholders, the authors’ findings support the view of the normative basis for stakeholder theory based on ethics, norms, and heuristic criteria as a way to solve conflicts among the claims of different stakeholders.