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Reputation Risk and Globalisation

Exploring the Idea of a Self-Regulating Corporation Terry O’Callaghan, formerly Senior Lecturer, The University of South Australia
Recently, multinational corporations have begun to reinvent themselves as socially responsible actors. This is largely in response to activist pressure. These activists have perceptively understood the link between corporate success and corporate behaviour. Corporate self-regulation has emerged as an important mechanism to counter this activist pressure. The author argues that corporations have a capacity for self-regulation because their reputation is critical to their success. As such, reputation is beginning to discipline corporate behaviour. The book first explores the link between corporate reputation, corporate behaviour and self-regulation. The author then compares and contrasts various studies of multinational corporations that have sought to self-regulate.
Extent: 240 pp
Hardback Price: $120.00 Web: $108.00
Publication Date: 2016
ISBN: 978 1 84542 303 2
Availability: In Stock
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  • Business and Management
  • International Business
  • Strategic Management
Recently, multinational corporations have begun to reinvent themselves as socially responsible actors, largely in response to anti-corporate activist pressure. The author argues that a concern with corporate reputation is leading to an ideational shift in corporate behaviour – in essence, it is disciplining their behaviour. This innovative exploration of the idea of a self-regulating corporation in an era of globalisation first examines the link between corporate reputation, corporate behaviour and self-regulation, and then goes on to compare and contrast various studies of multinational corporations that have sought to self-regulate.

Terry O’Callaghan includes a multifaceted critique of anti-corporate activists. This acknowledges both the dangers that multinational corporations pose to communities, and that anti-corporate activists are the first group to understand the potential risk of targeted campaigns to corporate reputations. He also illustrates his points using three case studies of companies that have attempted to self-regulate: Royal Dutch Shell, the Toyota Motor Corporation and Interface Inc.

Undergraduate and postgraduate students of international business, management and business ethics will be interested in the essential topics covered in this book. Academics and practitioners alike will appreciate its accessible lessons about reputational capital and holding multinational corporations accountable.
‘Self regulation has an important role, as this book highlights, at the meeting point of corporate success and accountability. Often a misnomer, as much of self regulation is in fact part of a contract between business and society, named “civil regulation” in other contexts, and an ingredient of future governance innovation’
– Simon Zadek, Co-Director, UNEP Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System, Switzerland
Contents: Introduction 1. Towards corporate self-regulation 2. Disciplining MNCs: corporate reputation as a driver of ideational change 3. Exploring the idea of a self-regulating corporation 4. Royal Dutch Shell's PR-led approach to self-regulation 5. The rise and fall and rise of the Toyota way 6. Interface Inc: a model of a self-regulating corporation? 7. Conclusion: Beyond Sustainability and Long Live the Australian Night Parrot Bibliography Index