The moderating role of stakeholder management and societal characteristics in the relationship between corporate environmental and financial performance

J Environ Manage. 2018 Jul 15;218:322-332. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2018.04.005. Epub 2018 Apr 22.


This study contributes to the debate about the moderating factors that affect the relationship between environmental and financial performance. Combining stakeholder theory, stakeholder salience, and legitimacy theory, and based on a large international sample, we demonstrate that stakeholder prioritization and engagement jointly positively moderate the relationship between environmental and financial performance. However, this moderating effect is only found when both formal and informal societal characteristics are strong and support the business environment surrounding the firm and its stakeholders. Contributions and implications for managers and regulators are discussed.

Keywords: Corporate financial performance; Corporate social responsibility; Environmental performance; Stakeholder engagement; Stakeholder prioritization.

MeSH terms

  • Commerce*
  • Conservation of Natural Resources*
  • Humans
  • Organizations
  • Social Conditions*