Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Managerial Sciences

First Advisor

Pamela S. Barr

Second Advisor

Jay O'Toole

Third Advisor

Elizabeth Lim

Fourth Advisor

Mark Keil


Firm behavior and performance has become increasingly susceptible to the influence of secondary stakeholders—namely community activists, advocacy groups, religious organizations, and other non-governmental organizations that often represent a broader social movement. Despite recent suggestions that secondary stakeholder demands trigger an important two-sided interactive process between secondary stakeholders and their targeted firms, little theoretical or empirical attention has been placed on firm-sided factors that influence the dynamics and outcomes of these interactions, especially the role and influence of the firm’s top managers during these interactions. In this three-essay dissertation, I theorize about and examine the influential role that the firm’s top managers expectedly occupy within the interactions that occur between secondary stakeholders and the firms that are the targets of their demands. My dissertation contributes to advancing strategic management and organization research by (1) examining influential managerial attributes that influence their firm’s responsiveness toward secondary stakeholder activism, and (2) examining certain important consequences of managerial responses for secondary stakeholder behavior and the targeted firm.