University of Oulu

Lehtinen, J., Aaltonen, K., & Rajala, R. (2019). Stakeholder management in complex product systems: Practices and rationales for engagement and disengagement. Industrial Marketing Management, 79, 58–70.

Stakeholder management in complex product systems : practices and rationales for engagement and disengagement

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Author: Lehtinen, Jere1; Aaltonen, Kirsi2; Rajala, Risto1
Organizations: 1Aalto University, School of Science, Maarintie 8, P.O. Box 15500, FI-00076 Aalto, Finland
2University of Oulu, Industrial Engineering and Management, P.O. Box 4610, FIN-90014 Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.6 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2019
Publish Date: 2019-07-11


Collaboration with stakeholders has become a cornerstone of contemporary business; however, absolute collaboration is not trouble-free. The present study explores how and why firms engage and disengage external stakeholders in their value-creating activities in complex product systems over time. From the existing research on stakeholder management, we know that actor roles, strategies, reasons and challenges of engaging external stakeholders in innovation and business activities vary across contexts. However, additional research is needed to construct a more comprehensive understanding of the practices as well as their rationales by which firms engage or disengage external stakeholders in complex product systems. Our empirical study of a European district development megaproject improves the current understanding of stakeholder management in complex product systems contexts. We derive nine practices and four rationales that timely describe the engagement and disengagement of external stakeholders. The study develops a processual model of stakeholder management in complex product systems with implications for both stakeholder management literature and managerial practice.

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Series: Industrial marketing management
ISSN: 0019-8501
ISSN-E: 1873-2062
ISSN-L: 0019-8501
Volume: 79
Pages: 58 - 70
DOI: 10.1016/j.indmarman.2018.08.011
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 222 Other engineering and technologies
Funding: This work was supported by Finnish Foundation for Technology Promotion.
Copyright information: © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (