AOM PDW on Historic CSR

AOM accepted a great PDW for this year’s conference on the role of history and corporate social responsibility – come along if you are attending this year!

Call for Papers

Historic Corporate Responsibility: Its Extent, Limits, and Consequences

The guest editors of the Journal of Business Ethics Special Issue on Historic Corporate Social Responsibility will arrange a paper development workshop at the Academy of Management Conference in Chicago.

There is a growing awareness of the critical but understudied role of time and history in the challenges we face in the present and the future. Businesses, universities, governments, and organizations in myriad industries and of all sizes are increasingly held to account for the actions of prior generations of leaders. The lingering effects of Monsanto’s Agent Orange, Yale University’s decision to change the name of Calhoun College, and controversies around the world concerning commemorations of leaders with complicated pasts (e.g., indigenous peoples, slavery) barely scratch the surface of this global phenomenon.

Scholars in management theory have become aware of an important  “historical turn” in organizational theory (Bucheli & Wadhwani, 2014; Maclean, Harvey, & Clegg, 2016; Mills, Suddaby, Foster & Durepos, 2016; Rowlinson, Hassard, & Decker, 2014). A recent issue of Academy of Management Review (Godfrey, Hassard, O’Connor, Rowlinson, & Ruef, 2016) included two articles addressing corporate (ir-)responsibility for long ago actions (Mena, Rintamäki, Fleming, & Spicer, 2016; Schrempf-Stirling, Palazzo, & Phillips, 2016). Though this work focuses largely on legacies of bad behavior, it may also be interesting to consider organizations with a history of being first movers on historically controversial issues. Similarly, recent work on the role of time and temporality in encouraging sustainable management practices (i.e. Slawinski & Bansal, 2015) and the observation that our implicit models of history affect our capacity to effect social change (Suddaby & Foster, 2017) reaffirms the importance of adopting a historical consciousness (Suddaby, 2016) when analyzing sustainability and corporate social responsibility (Stutz & Sachs, 2018). These contributions represent the beginning of a deeper and broader conversation about historic corporate responsibility.

PDW Overview

Each selected participant will present a brief summary of their work and include research appetizers (questions) for five minutes.

After the research appetizers have been presented, there will be roundtable discussions. The roundtables will provide the opportunity for further elaboration and in-depth discussion of the presented research topics. The discussions will be facilitated by mentors who read the submitted papers in advance. Confirmed discussants include Stephanie Decker (Aston Business School), Gabrielle Durepos (Mount Saint Vincent University), Paul C. Godfrey (Brigham Young University), Stefan Hielscher (University of Bath), Michael Rowlinson (University of Exeter), Sébastien Mena (Cass Business School), and Roy R. Suddaby (University of Victoria and Newcastle University).

The roundtable discussions will last about 20 minutes. After the discussion, the workshop participants will reconvene into a larger group to report their findings.

Submission Information and Deadlines

Scholars interested in presenting their work are asked to submit an abstract (no more than 2’000 words or 8 pages all in) to the PDW organizers at judith.schrempf-stirling@unige.ch by April 15, 2018 (please use AOM PDW in the subject line).

Accepted authors will be asked to submit a full paper (8,000-10,000 words) by July 1, 2018.

We welcome submissions on the following topics and questions amongst others:

  1. Contours and Extent of Historic Corporate Responsibility
  • What, if anything, can current leaders do to recognize or mitigate responsibility today for past actions?
  • What is the role of forgetting and selective remembering?
  • Can the past be a strategic advantage for the organization? Is this an ethical aim given our limits on knowing the truth about the past?
  1. Boundaries and Limits of Historic Corporate Responsibility
  • How do different legal, political, economic, social, or cultural contexts of the past pose problems to current organizations that face historic corporate responsibility?
  • How does the changing nature of the corporation influence our working understanding of historic corporate responsibility?
  • When has a corporation done enough in regards to its historic responsibilities?
  1. Consequences of Historic Corporate Responsibility
  • Can an organization apologize and who can accept it? Could an apology benefit current and future societies?
  • Should stigma attach to individuals who were participants in past transgressions? How do we define participants and to what extent did they have choices in their past actions?
  • If there is no “single truth” about the past, then why should organizations engage in historic corporate responsibility?
  1. Historical inquiry into the “history” of CSR, the transformation of business-society relationships and the evolution CSR practices
  • How have CSR practices changed over time? How are they shaped by their particular historical contexts?
  • Does the examination of socially responsible business practices in particular historical settings shed new light on contemporary CSR scholarship?
  • What can we learn from historical contextualization of past academic insights?

References

Bucheli, M., & Wadhwani, R. D. (Eds.). (2014). Organizations in time: History, theory, methods. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Godfrey, P. C., Hassard, J., O’Connor, E. S. O., Rowlinson, M., & Ruef, M. (2016). What is organizational history? Toward a creative synthesis of history and organization studies. Academy of Management Review, 41(4), 590–608.

Maclean, M., Harvey, C., & Clegg, S. R. (2016). Conceptualizing historical organization studies. Academy of Management Review, 41(4), 609–632.

Mena, S., Rintamäki, J., Fleming, P., & Spicer, A. (2016). On the forgetting of corporate irresponsibility. Academy of Management Review, 41(4), 720–738.

Mills, A. J., Suddaby, R., Foster, W. M., & Durepos, G. (2016). Re-visiting the historic turn 10 years later: Current debates in management and organizational history – an introduction. Management & Organizational History, 11(2), 67–76.

Rowlinson, M., Hassard, J., & Decker, S. (2014). Research strategies for organizational history: A dialogue between historical theory and organization theory. Academy of Management Review, 39(3), 250–274.

Schrempf-Stirling, J., Palazzo, G., & Phillips, R. A. (2016). Historic corporate social responsibility. Academy of Management Review, 41(4), 700–719.

Slawinski, N., & Bansal, P. (2015). Short on Time: Intertemporal Tensions in Business Sustainability. Organization Science, 26(2), 531–549.

Stutz, C., & Sachs, S. (2018). Facing the normative challenges: The potential of reflexive historical research. Business & Society, 57(1), 98–130.

Suddaby, R., & Foster, W. M. (2017). History and Organizational Change. Journal of Management, 43(1), 19–38.

Suddaby, R. (2016). Toward a historical consciousness: Following the historic turn in management thought. M@n@gement, 19(1), 46–60.

 

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