Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 105, Issue 3, pp 337-356

First online:

Stakeholder-Defined Corporate Responsibility for a Pre-Credit-Crunch Financial Service Company: Lessons for How Good Reputations are Won and Lost

  • Carola HillenbrandAffiliated withSchool of Management, Henley Business School, University of Reading Email author 
  • , Kevin MoneyAffiliated withSchool of Management, Henley Business School, University of Reading
  • , Stephen PavelinAffiliated withSchool of Economics, University of Reading

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This paper presents a study that identifies a stakeholder-defined concept of Corporate Responsibility (CR) in the context of a UK financial service organisation in the immediate pre-credit crunch era. From qualitative analysis of interviews and focus groups with employees and customers, we identify, in a wide-ranging stakeholder-defined concept of CR, six themes that together imply two necessary conditions for a firm to be regarded as responsible—both corporate actions and character must be consonant with CR. This provides both empirical support for a notable, recent theoretical contribution by Godfrey (in Acad Manag Rev 30:777–798, 2005) and novel lessons for reputation management practice.


Corporate Responsibility Stakeholders Reputation