Toward a Theory of Stakeholder Identification and Salience: Defining the Principle of who and What Really Counts

  title={Toward a Theory of Stakeholder Identification and Salience: Defining the Principle of who and What Really Counts},
  author={Ronald K. Mitchell and Bradley R. Agle and D. Wood},
  journal={Academy of Management Review},
Stakeholder theory has been a popular heuristic for describing the management environment for years, but it has not attained full theoretical status. Our aim in this article is to contribute to a theory of stakeholder identification and salience based on stakeholders possessing one or more of three relationship attributes: power, legitimacy, and urgency. By combining these attributes, we generate a typology of stakeholders, propositions concerning their salience to managers of the firm, and… Expand

Figures and Tables from this paper

A Test of the Relationship Between Stakeholder Attributes and Stakeholder Salience
The stakeholder model articulated by Freeman (1984) has seen significant theoretical development in the past few years. This study seeks to provide empirical insights to this burgeoning body ofExpand
The measurement of stakeholder salience: a strategy for the exploration of stakeholder theories
Stakeholder theories, from the strategic management or ethics perspective, seem to be on hold due to the lack of a measure of stakeholder orientation to enable theory testing and/or comparativeExpand
Toward a Contemporary Conceptual Framework for Stakeholder Theory
Abstract.Atomic individualism is embedded in most definitions of stakeholder theory, and as a result, stakeholders are not integral to the basic identity of the corporation which is considered to beExpand
The Stakeholder Theory
Stakeholder theory is a theory of organizational management and business ethics that addresses morals and values in managing an organization. It was originally detailed by R. Edward Freeman in theExpand
Three Elements of Stakeholder Legitimacy
This paper focuses attention on the stakeholder attribute of legitimacy. Drawing upon institutional and stakeholder theories, I develop a framework of stakeholder legitimacy based on its threeExpand
The Primordial Stakeholder: Advancing the Conceptual Consideration of Stakeholder Status for the Natural Environment
This article furthers the argument for a stakeholder theory that integrates into managerial decision-making the relationship between business organizations and the natural environment. The authorsExpand
Does the theory of stakeholder identity and salience lead to corporate social responsibility? The case of environmental justice
Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to review a possible link between the theory of stakeholder identity and salience (TSIS) and environmental justice and suggest a possible resolution.Expand
Toward a new theory of the firm: a critique of stakeholder “theory”
Argues that stakeholder theory may be an appropriate model to describe firm behavior and replace the dominant paradigm, the economic model of the firm. However, current conceptualizations ofExpand
A strategic perspective on stakeholder management
The purpose of this paper is to contribute to an instrumental argumentation of stakeholder theory by discussing stakeholder theory from a strategic perspective. Our analysis does not use moral orExpand
A ‘Names-and-Faces Approach’ to Stakeholder Identification and Salience: A Matter of Status
Despite its increasing popularity across management disciplines, stakeholder theory holds an important shortcoming in terms of its guidance for understanding the heterogeneity of stakeholderExpand


This article is intended to enhance the position of stakeholder theory as an integrating theme for the business and society field. It offers an instrumental theory of stakeholder management based onExpand
Stakeholder‐Agency Theory
Taking agency theory and stakeholder theory as points of departure, this article proposes a paradigm that helps explain the following: (1) certain aspects of a firm's strategic behaviour; (2) theExpand
Managing Legitimacy: Strategic and Institutional Approaches
This article synthesizes the large but diverse literature on organizational legitimacy, highlighting similarities and disparities among the leading strategic and institutional approaches. TheExpand
The Stakeholder Theory of the Corporation: Concepts, Evidence, and Implications
?The stakeholder theory has been advanced and justified in the management literature on the basis of its descriptive accuracy, instrumental power, and normative validity. These three aspects of theExpand
The Politics of Stakeholder Theory: Some Future Directions
The purpose of this paper is to enter the conversation about stakeholder theory with the goal of clarifying certain foundational issues. I want to show, along with Boatright, that there is noExpand
Strategies for assessing and managing organizational stakeholders
Executive Overview To cope with the environmental turbulence and uncertainty facing many U.S. industries, business executives must effectively manage their stakeholders. Stakeholders include thoseExpand
Stakeholders and the Moral Responsibilities of Business
This paper discusses the normative ethical theory of the business firm advanced principally by William E. Evan and R. Edward Freeman. According to their stakeholder theory, the firm should be managedExpand
A Feminist Reinterpretation of The Stakeholder Concept
Stakeholder theory has become one of the most important developments in the field of business ethics. While this concept has evolved and gained prominence as a method of integrating ethics into theExpand
A Stakeholder Framework for Analyzing and Evaluating Corporate Social Performance
This article presents conclusions from a 10-year research program, the purpose of which has been to develop a framework and methodology, grounded in the reality of corporate behavior, for analyzingExpand
Strategic Management: A Stakeholder Approach
Part I. The Stakeholder Approach: 1. Managing in turbulent times 2. The stakeholder concept and strategic management 3. Stakeholder management: framework and philosophy Part II. Strategic ManagementExpand