The Agenda-Setting Power of Stakeholder Media

Posted: 14 May 2011 Last revised: 18 Oct 2014

See all articles by Mark Lee Hunter

Mark Lee Hunter

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Luk N. Van Wassenhove

INSEAD

Maria Besiou

Kühne Logistics University

Mignon Van Halderen

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University

Date Written: May 5, 2011

Abstract

This article considers how “stakeholder media” – media produced and controlled by stakeholders with the purpose of affecting public opinion or opinions of other actors toward issues or organisations – can exert powerful influences on firms by setting the public agenda and framing a company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives in ways desirable for those stakeholders. We observe that research on agenda-setting, which is very largely based on studies of the traditional news media, generally ignores the increasingly powerful reach and impact of media controlled by stakeholders. Hence, based on a case study of BP’s CSR campaign “Beyond Petroleum”, we propose a new model that addresses agenda setting by stakeholder media. The model captures distinct agenda setting as well as framing techniques used by stakeholder media to put pressure on BP’s “Beyond Petroleum” rebranding campaign. We thus aim to advance extant agenda setting concepts, by demonstrating how stakeholder media ultimately exert different and in some ways stronger influence on firms than traditional news media.

Keywords: Agenda setting, Beyond Petroleum, BP, Bridging, Corporate Social Responsibility, Framing, Greenpeace, News Media, Stakeholder, Stakeholder Media

Suggested Citation

Hunter, Mark Lee and Van Wassenhove, Luk N. and Besiou, Maria and Van Halderen, Mignon, The Agenda-Setting Power of Stakeholder Media (May 5, 2011). INSEAD Working Paper No. 2011/59/TOM/INSEAD Social Innovation Centre. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1832522 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1832522

Mark Lee Hunter (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Luk N. Van Wassenhove

INSEAD ( email )

Boulevard de Constance
77 305 Fontainebleau Cedex
France
(33) (0)1 60 72 42 66 (Phone)
(33) (0)1 60 72 40 49 (Fax)

Maria Besiou

Kühne Logistics University ( email )

Großer Grasbrook 17
Hamburg, 20457
Germany

Mignon Van Halderen

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University ( email )

P.O. Box 1738
Room T08-21
3000 DR Rotterdam, 3000 DR
Netherlands

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