Open Access Article

Title: Understanding stakeholder influence: lessons from a controversial megaproject

Authors: Lara Gonzalez-Porras; Anna Heikkinen; Johanna Kujala

Addresses: Faculty of Management and Business, Tampere University, Kanslerinrinne 1, 33014, Finland ' Faculty of Management and Business, Tampere University, Kanslerinrinne 1, 33014, Finland ' Faculty of Management and Business, Tampere University, Kanslerinrinne 1, 33014, Finland

Abstract: This study aims to extend the understanding of stakeholder influence in megaprojects by examining a controversial pulp mill project in Uruguay. The theoretical framework is based on stakeholder theory, focusing on stakeholder influences in international megaprojects. The research data comprise 96 newspaper articles from 2005 to 2009, and qualitative content analysis is used in the empirical analysis. The findings present the main events of the megaproject and how the stakeholder-firm and inter-stakeholder influences emerged and evolved during the project. This research contributes to the existing knowledge of stakeholder influence in megaprojects by showing that stakeholder influences are interdependent and non-exclusive and that stakeholder influence evolves over time. Moreover, the study examines inter-stakeholder influence in addition to stakeholder-firm influence and extends the stakeholder-firm classification, contributing to the literature on secondary stakeholder influence. The managerial implications emphasise the importance of understanding how stakeholders can be influenced by or, alternatively, exert influence in megaprojects.

Keywords: stakeholder theory; stakeholder relationships; influence; megaprojects; conflict; case study; qualitative study; newspaper articles.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHRDM.2021.116923

International Journal of Human Resources Development and Management, 2021 Vol.21 No.2/3, pp.191 - 213

Accepted: 31 Jan 2020
Published online: 02 Aug 2021 *