Environmental NGOs and Business: A Grounded Theory of Assessment, Targeting, and Influencing
Hendry, Jamie R.
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This dissertation sought to develop a grounded theory explaining how ENGOs assess the environmental performance of firms, select target industries and firms, and influence those targeted industries and firms. A preliminary model based on research in the fields of social movements, neo-institutional theory, stakeholder theory, and corporate social performance was developed. The model contained 21 propositions: seven regarding assessment, nine regarding targeting, and five regarding influencing. Interviews were conducted with 33 representatives of five ENGOs: Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Greenpeace, Environmental Defense (ED), World Resources Institute (WRI), and Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). NRDC and WRI served as pilot studies. NRDC, Greenpeace, and ED were considered case studies for the purpose of drawing inferences about the propositions. Insufficient interviews were conducted at WRI and UCS to draw inferences from them; however, data from these interviews was included in the dissertation to the extent it provided additional support for the inferences drawn. Qualitative methods were used to analyze the data. Results regarding the propositions were presented, as well as additional findings going beyond the propositions. A grounded theory of how ENGOs assess, target, and influence firms was developed based on the results; a model to accompany the grounded theory was also developed.
- Doctoral Dissertations