Developing Advocacy Strategies for Avoiding Discourse Failure through Moralizing and Emotionalizing Campaigns
Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Department of Business Ethics, Discussion Paper Number 2019-01, ISBN 978-3-86829-989-2
32 Pages Posted: 8 Apr 2019
Date Written: March 06, 2019
In recent years scholars just as practitioners have been developing measures for addressing inefficiencies and reputational problems of NGOs, which offer goods and services. However, these accountability standards may not be sufficient for advocacy NGOs. As we show in an exemplary case, moralizing and emotionalizing campaigns may not-intentionally increase risks for NGOs even if the involved NGOs have noble aims. We use the psychologically and empirically well-founded Moral Foundations Theory (MFT) to highlight how the scandalization of glyphosate counteracts NGOs’ long-term interests in highlighting and solving ecological and social issues. Against the backdrop of MFT, we present communication strategies that enable appropriate semantics for avoiding such risky campaigns. Second, we highlight how NGOs can encourage institutional changes within the society and their organizations. Such governance structures may help them to resist the temptation of populist campaigning and thus to escape the current trap of self-endangering their important role for societal and ecological advocacy.
Keywords: Discourse Failure, Rational Choice, NGOs, Moral Foundations Theory, Advocacy
JEL Classification: L31, L39, D90, D91
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation