From a stakeholder theory perspective, the myriad codes of conduct at company, industry and United Nations level, recommending ‘stakeholder engagement’ and ‘community engagement’, suggest that local residents have a strong say in an investment affecting their community. The status of the local community has apparently evolved during the last three decades, if we think that local community was not even listed in the stakeholder chart in Freeman’s foundational book (Freeman 1984: 56), and it was only briefly mentioned as a dependent stakeholder in another influential work building upon Freeman’s in the 1990s (Mitchell et al. 1997: 865). The yearly quantity of studies dedicated to com munity engagement also seems to confirm that the ‘Principle of Who or What Really Counts’ (Freeman 1984) has gathered momentum over time: from one study in 1984 and less than five per year until 2000, there have been over 30 up to around 2010 (Bowen et al. 2010: 301). As for the investors, commitments like ‘obtaining local community support is an important goal’1 are commonplace in their corporate responsibility statements. But from scholars to companies or governmental officials, everybody seems shy about asking a simple question: What happens when the community denies support, and their refusal is for environmental reasons?
|Title of host publication||Corporate Responsibility and Sustainable Development|
|Subtitle of host publication||Exploring the Nexus of Private and Public Interests|
|Editors||L Rayman-Bacchus, P Walsh|
|Number of pages||19|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|