Is stakeholder theory really ethical?

Okechukwu Enyinna


Stakeholder theory claims to promote moral values in business and this claim is generally accepted. Yet, literature shows that the theory is fundamentally strategic and only incidentally normative. This paper explores the assumptions of philosophical pragmatism that underpin the theory and concludes that the theory does not qualify as normative, since its conception of morality is basically hypothetical. 


Instrumental theory; normative theor; pragmatism; separation thesis; stakeholder theory

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