Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 76, Issue 1, pp 35–53 | Cite as

Corporate Ethical Identity as a Determinant of Firm Performance: A Test of the Mediating Role of Stakeholder Satisfaction

  • Pascual Berrone
  • Jordi Surroca
  • Josep A. TribóEmail author


In this article, we empirically assess the impact of corporate ethical identity (CEI) on a firm’s financial performance. Drawing on formulations of normative and instrumental stakeholder theory, we argue that firms with a strong ethical identity achieve a greater degree of stakeholder satisfaction (SS), which, in turn, positively influences a firm’s financial performance. We analyze two dimensions of the CEI of firms: corporate revealed ethics and corporate applied ethics. Our results indicate that revealed ethics has informational worth and enhances shareholder value, whereas applied ethics has a positive impact through the improvement of SS. However, revealed ethics by itself (i.e. decoupled from ethical initiatives) is not sufficient to boost economic performance.


business ethics corporate ethical identity financial performance stakeholder satisfaction stakeholder theory 



corporate ethical identity


corporate revealed ethics


corporate applied ethics


sustainable investment research international


Kinder, Lyndenburg, Domini Research and Analytics Inc.


stakeholder satisfaction


corporate financial performance


market value added


return on assets


research and development


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pascual Berrone
    • 1
  • Jordi Surroca
    • 1
  • Josep A. Tribó
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Business AdministrationUniversidad Carlos III de MadridGetafe, MadridSpain

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