Business and Society Special Issues on Digital Technology and Business Responsibilities

ball-63527_1920Business and Society just recently published its new special issue titled “The Governance of Digital Technology, Big Data, and the Internet: New Roles and Responsibilities for Business.” This Issue features a collection of articles that explore how new technologies and innovations have changed the social responsibilities of businesses. What does the digital age hold for corporate social responsibility?


Business & Society aims to be the leading, peer-reviewed outlet for scholarly work dealing specifically with the intersection of business and society. They publish research that develops, tests and refines theory, and which enhances our understanding of important societal issues and their relation to business. It is the official journal of the International Association of Business and Society.

To read more about the issue click here.



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Contributing to The International Debate on Meta-Organizations: Why Meta-Organizations Matter

[We’re pleased to welcome author Héloïse Berkowitz of the Ecole Polytechnique, Paris and Sanne Bor of the Hanken School of Economics. Berkowitz and Bor recently published an article in the Journal of Management Inquiry entitled “Why Meta-organizations Matter: a Response to Lawton et al. and Spillman,” which is currently free to read for a limited time. Below,  Berkowitz and Bor reflect on their research:]

JMI_72ppiRGB_powerpointWhat are meta-organizations?

A meta-organization is an association of organizations. Meta-organizations are an important phenomenon of collective action among organizations. The International Football Club Association FIFA is an example of a meta-organization, but there are many more out there. Star Alliance is another one. The United Nations also is a meta-organization. Inside or across sectors and industries, thousands of trade associations contribute to collective action at the level of organizations. Multi-stakeholder groups, that gather not only businesses, but also NGOs and governments or universities, also constitute a growing form of meta-organizations.

What motivated you to write this article?

We both recently had completed our PhDs on meta-organizations (at Ecole polytechnique, France and Hanken School of Economics, Finland), a setting not commonly studied at our departments and both were searching for connections which would share our interest in developing meta-organization theory. We had not ever really met before, but when we took our breakfast in Stockholm during a workshop organized by the SCORE (Stockholm Centre for Organizational REsearch), we easily found common ground for a scientific dialogue. We agreed right away that there was a need not only to investigate meta-organizations further, but also to give visibility to this concept – already 12-year-old. Discussing during the workshop and further on when we both moved back to our respective institutions, we started drafting a common research project.

A little later, while we were drafting our common research project, two great papers on the topic of meta-organization appeared online in the Journal of Management Inquiry. The first was Lawton, Rajwani and Minto (2017), the second was Spillman (2017). They precisely called for more research on the topic. We were so excited! Their focus was on an approach that can be traced back to a paper published in the Strategic Management Journal (Gulati, Puranam and Tushman, 2012), which slightly differs from our approach, which builds on Ahrne and Brunsson’s work (2005, 2008). We instantly decided to suggest writing a paper in which we would respond to these two papers with the aim to bridge and link research on meta-organizations across the approaches. In addition, we wanted to explain the theorizing developments by the ‘European School’ of meta-organization. This resulted in our contribution to the debate.

What advice would you give to new scholars and incoming researchers in this particular field of study?

Our paper suggests a research agenda for meta-organization studies, a good start for any new scholar and incoming researchers wishing to contribute to this growing body of knowledge. In particular, there is a dire need for empirical work, testing the theoretical bases that are emerging from the multiple ongoing research projects across continents synthesized in our paper.

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New Podcast: Kincy Madison on Agency and Stewardship Theory

Podcast MicrophoneIn the latest podcast from Family Business Review, assistant editor Karen Vinton speaks with Kincy Madison of Mississippi State University about the article “Viewing Family Firm Behavior and Governance Through the Lens of Agency and Stewardship Theories,” co-authored with Daniel Holt, Franz Kellermanns, and Annette Ranft.

You can find the podcast on the Family Business Review website here, or click here to download the podcast. You can also read the full article here.

The abstract:

Agency and stewardship theories are prominent perspectives to examine myriad FBR_C1_revised authors color.inddissues within family firms. Although considered opposing theories, both address the same phenomena: the individual-level behaviors and firm-level governance mechanisms that predict organizational outcomes. Accordingly, we review and synthesize these theories concurrently, using the concepts of behavior and governance as our organizing framework. Our review encompasses 107 family firm articles grounded in agency and/or stewardship theory, published between 2000 and 2014 in 24 journals across several disciplines. Additionally, we identify future research areas that provide scholars opportunities to push theoretical boundaries and offer further insights into the family firm.

Want to hear more? Click here to browse more podcasts from Family Business Review and here to subscribe to the SAGE Management and Business podcast channel on iTunes. You can also sign up for e-alerts and get notifications of all the latest research from Family Business Review sent directly to your inbox!


 Kincy  Madison, Ph.D.Kristen (“Kincy”) Madison is an Assistant Professor of Management in the College of Business at Mississippi State University. She received her PhD in Organizations and Strategy from the University of Tennessee. She has a BS in Management and a MS in Human Resources, both from Auburn University. Kincy’s research interest is family business, with a focus on topics that intersect strategic management and human resources, such as governance, leadership, and competitive advantage.

Karen L. Vinton, Ph.D., is assistant editor of FBR and a 1999 Barbara Hollander Award winner and Professor Emeritus of Business at the College of Business at Montana State University, where she founded the University’s Family Business Program. An FFI Fellow, she has served on its Board of Directors and chaired the Body of Knowledge committee.

Book Review: Al Gore’s ‘The Future’

al_gore_futureAl Gore. The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change. New York, NY: Random House, 2013. 558 pp. $30. ISBN: 978-0-8129-9294-6

Read the review by Michael Marien of Global Foresight Books, published in the World Future Review June 2013 issue:

A huge and well-researched book on “the six most important drivers of global change, how they are converging and interacting with one another, where they are taking us, and how we . . . can best affect the way these changes unfold” (p. xiii). There is a clear consensus that “the future now emerging will be extremely different from anything we have ever known . . . there is no prior period of change that remotely resembles what humanity is about to experience” (p. xv). All six of these emergent revolutionary changes “are threatening to overtake us at a moment in history when there is a dangerous vacuum of global leadership.”WFR_72ppiRGB_150pixW

Click here to continue reading, and follow this link to see the latest issue of World Future Review.

Along with interviews with leading futures practitioners, WFR publishes important new foresight literature addressing topics informed by technology assessment, policy analysis, operations research, issues management, competition research and more. Sign up for e-alerts here.

Assessing a Presidential Transition: Bill Clinton’s Inaugural Year

Al S. Lovvorn and W. Earl Walker, both of The Citadel, published “Assessing a Presidential Transition: Bill Clinton’s Inaugural Year” on September 29th, 2011 in the Journal of Management Inquiry’s OnlineFirst collection. Other articles in this collection can be found here.

The abstract:

A presidential administration transition is a crucial time for establishing an effective governance style and reflects the president’s own personality. Presidents are concerned with building a coherent, cohesive team as they move from their electoral victory to implementing their vision for the country through legislative successes. A successful president displays an entrepreneurial mind-set as he proceeds throughout his 1st year to achieve early legislative victories, which establish the president as an effective president. This entrepreneurial approach requires cold-blooded politics and eschews inordinate concern for individuals, issues, and policies, and, this entrepreneurial approach is predicated on nimble governance and shrewd implementation. Nimble governance is choosing among alternative priorities, avoiding blunders, and maneuvering in the face of opposition. Shrewd implementation results in a few, carefully selected initiatives that are announced early, lobbied energetically, enacted swiftly, and executed boldly. These criteria are applied to the inaugural year of the Clinton presidency.

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