Toward a Theory of Stakeholder Identification and Salience: Defining the Principle of Who and What Really Counts

Ronald K. Mitchell, Bradley R. Agle and Donna J. Wood
The Academy of Management Review
Vol. 22, No. 4 (Oct., 1997), pp. 853-886
Published by: Academy of Management
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Page Count: 34
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Toward a Theory of Stakeholder Identification and Salience: Defining the Principle of Who and What Really Counts


Stakeholder theory has been a popular heuristic for describing the management environment for years, but it has not attained full theoretical status. Our aim in this article is to contribute to a theory of stakeholder identification and salience based on stakeholders possessing one or more of three relationship attributes: power, legitimacy, and urgency. By combining these attributes, we generate a typology of stakeholders, propositions concerning their salience to managers of the firm, and research and management implications.

Notes and References

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