Frank de Bakker
IÉSEG School of Management

I combine insights from institutional theory, social movement studies, stakeholder theory and related fields, to unravel interactions between activist groups and business firms on issues of corporate social responsibility (CSR). Institutional and ideological mechanisms are central to understand how activist groups work, together or not, in trying to influence institutional arrangements. After all, activists increasingly seek to influence corporate policies and practices to change the institutional conditions in an industrial field and thus what is considered proper corporate behaviour. These activist groups increasingly engage in coordinated forms of activism but how they exactly operate to achieve their objectives still poses many questions. The responses of firms to these groups’ efforts are understudied as well. Hence, my central research question is: “How do activist groups operate, what tactics do they use over time to establish institutional change on issues of CSR and how do firms respond to these efforts?” I study business - activist interaction processes on CSR in several fields to develop an answer to this question. Other fields of interest include activist tactics, corporate political activity and the role of CSR managers in all this turmoil.


My research appeared in journals like Academy of Management Review, Journal of Management Studies, Business & Society, Academy of Management Journal, Organization Studies, Business Strategy and the Environment, Journal of Business Ethics, Academy of Management Discoveries and several others. I also wrote a range of chapters in edited volumes - see my list of publications for a complete overview.


I supervise several PhD students on a diverse set of topics, am an active member of EGOS (Standing Working Group 2 - Organizing Social Responsibilities in Con­tested Times) and I am one of the editors of Business & Society. In addition, I sit on the editorial boards of several journals: Journal of Management Studies, Organization Studies, Organization & Environment and the International Journal of Sustainable Strategic Management.


At IÉSEG, I am coordinating ICOR, the IÉSEG Centre for Organizational Responsibility.










Frank G. A. de Bakker

Department of Management
IÉSEG School of Management

3 Rue de la Digue
59000 Lille

T +33 3 20 54 58 92
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