Article
To read the full-text of this research, you can request a copy directly from the authors.

Abstract

We examine Twitter data to assess the impact of media exposes on the reputations of two international nonprofits, Oxfam and Save the Children (STC). Using a random sample of 6794 Tweets, we study the daily gap between positive and negative sentiments expressed towards these organizations. The “unweighted gap” and the “weighted gap” (weighted by the number of followers) of the Twitter handle follow broadly the same trajectory with high fluctuation in response to new negative or positive media stories. Twitter handles with large audiences amplify variability in weighted gap. While Oxfam’s reputation did not fully recover to pre-Haiti levels even 6 months after the scandal, STC’s reputation returned to pre-scandal levels in 8 days, although it fluctuated in response to new revelations. Overall, reputation recovery for both organizations was aided when they received celebrity endorsements and focused public attention on their positive activities, especially by linking to visible global events.

No full-text available

Request Full-text Paper PDF

To read the full-text of this research,
you can request a copy directly from the authors.

... A series of high-profile charity scandals have sent shock waves through the nonprofit sector in recent years. These include scandals about sexual exploitation by employees of Oxfam and Save the Children (Scurlock et al., 2020), slow dispersion of funds to victims of the Haiti earthquake by the Red Cross (Sullivan, 2015), and charities' highpressure fundraising techniques allegedly contributing to an elderly donor's suicide (Hind, 2017). Media outlets claim such transgressions have shaken the public's trust in nonprofits, in turn making it difficult for such organizations to effectively fundraise and fulfill their social missions (e.g., Gaskin, 1999). ...
... Research on trust maintenance among nonprofits has focused instead on strategies such as achieving accreditation (Becker, 2018;Bekkers, 2003), celebrity endorsements or using social media to promote positive news stories (Scurlock et al., 2020), and using organizational statements that deny or diminish the impact of a scandal (Hou et al., 2020). ...
... Here, we find that apologies are just as effective for nonprofits as they are for commercial organizations. We can therefore add apologies to the repertoire of effective trust repair strategies for nonprofits that have previously been evidenced, including denial, diminishing the violation, positive social media campaigns, and celebrity endorsement (Hou et al., 2020;Scurlock et al., 2020). ...
Article
There is a double standard in public responses to scandals: Nonprofits are penalized more harshly than commercial organizations for the same transgression (the “moral disillusionment effect”). However, previous research—focused on commercial organizations—has sometimes shown that a positive reputation can insure organizations against the negative effects of scandals. In light of this, we asked whether a second double standard exists when it comes to trust repair: Can nonprofits regain trust and consumer support more quickly than commercial organizations after apologizing? Two experiments ( combined N = 805), considering responses to sexual exploitation and fraud scandals, replicated and extended the moral disillusionment effect. Trust and consumer support were partially restored following an apology (and even a statement acknowledging the scandal without apologizing), but the rate of repair was the same for nonprofits and commercial organizations. Nonprofit managers should therefore implement internal controls to prevent violations and issue public responses when scandals emerge.
... A final complication is that reputations tend to be path dependent and durable, particularly for large organizations (Mishina, Block, and Mannor 2012;Mitchell and Stroup 2017;Archambeault and Webber 2018;Scurlock, Dolsak, and Prakash 2019), and the formation and influence of trust is not as linear and rational as most models of reputation regulation presume. Social trust based on shared social identities and cause-based solidarities often predisposes people to have affinities for particular nonprofits without much of an evidentiary base (Rousseau et al. 1998;Keating and Thrandardottir 2017). ...
... While in the immediate aftermath of the media flurry, public donations and trust plummeted, with a loss of 20,000 regular givers and £3.8million in public donations (Cooney 2019a(Cooney , 2019b, support for Oxfam GB had bounced back a year later (Scurlock, Dolsak, and Prakash 2019). The other INGOS that were caught up in sexual abuse and exploitation were also global brands, and such globalness seems to afford them a special status, or at least the sense of special status (Laidler-Kylander, Quelch, and Simonin 2007), so that they, too, could withstand some very bad press in a way that lesser known nonprofits might not. ...
Article
Full-text available
Investigations of how Oxfam Great Britain (GB) managed its safeguarding systems and handled revelations of sexual exploitation by its staff highlighted a variety of internal governance and culture issues, and a lack of transparency as it sought to protect its reputation. The current models of reputation management do not fully explain its actions, however. This article argues that five systemic factors in the environment in which nonprofits operate create undue pressures for protection of reputations and contribute to poor assessment of risks, inadequate accountability systems and limited transparency. These factors include: a stress on success and related competition for market share and pressures for growth; expectations of low overheads; challenges of governance and risk management; lack of public awareness; and regulatory gaps. Drawing on media coverage and the commissions of inquiry, the analysis shows how all of these contextual factors were at play in the Oxfam case, and suggests potential reforms.
... Indeed, NGOs face multiple accusations of unaccountability and criticism of their work tends to be similar across different organization types (Pallas and Guidero 2016). 2 The recent scandals at Oxfam and Save the Children (Dixon, Hope, and Yorke 2018;Quinn 2018) not only raised critical questions about the non-profit sector, but also indicated its resilience. For example, public sentiment toward the two INGOs recovered to pre-scandal levels within months, in case of one, and even days in case of the other (Scurlock, Prakash, and Dolsak 2020). NGOs can also dominate certain areas of work, such as global malaria research or school policy (Balboa 2014), and influence the demand for market products (Auld et al. 2009) or public perceptions of issues like sweatshop working conditions (Harrison and Scorse 2010). ...
Article
Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are pivotal actors in international affairs. They manage billions of dollars in funding, work all around the world, and shape global policies and standards. It thus comes as no surprise that the subject of accountability has drawn the interest of an increasing number of scholars across disciplines. Though there seems to be agreement about its desirability, accountability is also described as chameleon-like and ambiguous. And despite calls for more cross-disciplinary learning and conceptual clarity, there does not exist a comprehensive review of accountability conceptualizations across and within disciplines, or how the different meanings relate to each other. Based on the conceptual review of 217 research articles published within the last twenty years, this study identifies and analyzes conceptualizations of accountability in the major journals of five engaged disciplines: accounting, development studies, international relations and political science, organization studies and management, and public administration. Integrating this broad scholarship reveals that: (1) there exist 113 different conceptualizations of accountability, 90 of which are rarely used and appear in less than 5 percent of all analyzed articles, (2) scholars have used forty-three different conceptualizations in 2019 compared to seventeen conceptualizations in 2009, (3) many conceptualizations refer to same phenomena by different name (duplication), and different phenomena by the same name (conflict), and that (4) conceptual ambiguity contributes to ambiguity among the forty different terms used to measure and operationalize accountability. These findings illustrate a lack of cross-disciplinary learning and accumulation of knowledge, and suggest that new conceptualizations be introduced only if one or more of the 113 existing ones don't already capture an idea sufficiently. The purpose of this article is to serve as a concept map for scholars when debating and charting new directions for the study of accountability.
... The reputational damage for NPOs from scandal is severe (Scurlock et al, 2020;McDonald, 2016). Whilst NPOs may survive association with an irresponsible corporation, NPO managers must weigh the potential benefits against costs and largely unknown risks. ...
Preprint
Full-text available
Draft report on Irish NPO Attitudes to and Experiences of Corporate Social Responsibility
... Multiple types of deviant behavior take place in and by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). Examples of NGO's deviant behavior discussed in the academic literature include sexual harassment and exploitation (Gillespie et al. 2019;Scurlock et al. 2020), abuse of power (Gallagher and Radcliffe 2002), and fraud and corruption Gelman 2001, 2004;Liu et al. 2019). Various examples of NGOs' deviant behavior have also recently come forward in the media, such as the leaking of over half a million clients' personal and health data by Community Medical Centers (Coble 2021), a white privilege culture and persisting institutional racism within Médecins Sans Frontières (Parker 2020), and the head of Save the Children resisting resignation after "damning" (McVeigh 2020: 1) inquiries into his handling of allegations of sexual harassment by senior staff. ...
Preprint
Full-text available
Multiple types of deviant behavior take place in and by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), even though NGOs are perceived to be morally good. Research explains NGO’s deviant behavior in spite of their moral goodness. In this article, we conceptualize how NGO moral goodness can cause NGO deviant behavior. We propose that the three inherent characteristics of NGOs—the nondistribution constraint, being private, and voluntary—can lead to the perception of NGOs being morally good. This perception can lead to a halo effect within NGOs, whereby NGOs believe themselves to be morally better than they are. We conceptualize how the three characteristics can lead to the glorification of an NGO’s mission, its knowledge of what is good, and its people. We define this as the NGO halo effect. We propose three conceptual mechanisms—moral justification, moral superiority, and moral naivety— to explain how the NGO halo effect can lead to NGOs’ deviant behavior. We discuss our model’s implications for theory building and future research.
... In recent years, several scandals involving high profile international NPOs have brought to light gaping deficits, especially with regard to the internal accountability mechanisms of NGOs, that is their ability to take responsibility for themselves as opposed to being held responsible externally for meeting standards and obligations (Ebrahim 2003). The investigation of Oxfam International's failure to follow up on charges of sexual abuse involving staff working in Haiti led to revelations of a more general environment that allowed sexual misconduct and bullying to go unchecked throughout the organization constitutes a prime example of the problem (Prakash 2019;Scurlock, Dolsak, and Prakash 2019). Similarly, Amnesty International was forced to close its Zimbabwe office in the wake of rampant fraud and financial mismanagement. ...
Article
Full-text available
The relationship between many governments and the nonprofit sector as well as organized civil society more generally has become more complex, laden with often hidden tensions. In some cases, state–nonprofit sector relationships have deteriorated, which has led experts and activists to speak of a “shrinking space” for civil society. However, this diagnosis applies mostly to illiberal and autocratic countries. More widespread is a stagnation in state — nonprofit sector relations that seems indicative of a longstanding policy neglect, which we see as the true challenge to the future of the nonprofit sector. In response, we argue for more proactive policy stances along with a differentiated model for regulatory frameworks on the basis of functional roles.
... Many of them have not left the country, and their continued presence has created political and social problems. Indeed, Haiti was the location of the Oxfam scandal (Scurlock et al., 2020), which brought to light governance failures in several other global NGOs. ...
Article
An extensive literature identifies conditions under which markets and states work efficiently and effectively towards their stated missions. When these conditions are violated, these institutions are deemed to show some level of failure. In contrast to the study of market and government failures, scholars have tended to focus on non-governmental organizations’ (NGOs) successes instead of failures. This is probably because they view NGOs as virtuous actors, guided by principled beliefs rather than instrumental concerns, not susceptible to agency conflicts, accountable to the communities they serve, and working cooperatively with each other. A growing literature questions this “virtue narrative.” When virtue conditions are violated, NGOs could exhibit different levels of failure. In synthesizing this literature, we offer an analytic typology of NGO failures: agency failure, NGOization failure, representation failure, and cooperation failure. Finally, given NGOs’ important role in public policy, we outline institutional innovations to address these failures.
... Acting in a moral and virtuous manner is therefore an important source of a good reputation, and thus also funding, but does not guarantee it (Gourevitch and lake 2012). Actors providing funding or engaging with NGDOs in other ways are aware of the organisational incentives these groups face and the potential these create for moral lapses, especially in light of highly publicised scandals associated with NGDOs (Gibelman and Gelman 2004;Scurlock, Dolsak, and Prakash 2020). It is also difficult, if not impossible, to verify how NGDOs behave in practice, especially 'in the field' (Edwards and Hulme 1996), and whether they actually live up to their moral missions. ...
Article
Full-text available
This article examines how non-governmental development organisations (NGDOs) balance their moral and organisational/financial incentives in the case of the European Union Emergency Trust Fund for Africa (EUTF). The EUTF was created in 2015 to support the European Union's (EU's) migration policy by addressing the 'root causes' of migration in Africa. The article analyses how NGDOs have reacted to the EUTF using qualitative textual analysis of publications and press releases, and finds that NGDOs have been highly critical of the EUTF's underlying narrative, goals and implementation. Their positions align closely with the stated moral vision of supporting and empowering the global poor. Despite this critical position, many NGDOs have benefitted financially from the EUTF as project implementers. Regression analysis on the determinants of NGDO participation in EUTF projects reveals that NGDOs have largely avoided the more controversial migration management projects of the EUTF, and have focused mostly on projects that build resilience in local communities and support improving the lives and the rights of the poor in Africa.
... The first dataset, related to domain 1 in Table 1, consisted of articles about developing countries that appeared in the media between 2011 and 2013. We deliberately chose a quiet period without high-profile scandals or incidents, to complement studies of media coverage after such incidents (Enghel and Danielsson 2019;Scurlock, Dolsak, and Prakash 2020). We chose national newspapers with a distinct profile, and the largest regional newspapers in their respective regions (north, east, south, west, reference year 2012). 1 Articles were then chosen from the three national and seven regional Dutch newspapers selected via LexisNexis. 2 Together these newspapers had a readership of approximately 4.7 million, almost half the total reach of paid newspapers in the Netherlands. ...
Article
Full-text available
Recent high-profile scandals raise concerns about how development cooperation is represented. This article examines how the subject gets in the media, examining the tone of voice and framing in newspaper articles and NGO advertisements in the Netherlands. It reveals a remarkable difference between newspaper articles and opinion pieces. Regular reports are characterised by, a neutral to slightly positive tone. In contrast, opinion pieces are predominantly negative. The article identifies possible explanations for the critical tone of opinion pieces. It finds that NGOs’ own advertisements may contribute to negative opinion pieces, by problematising the situation in developing countries while rarely demonstrating their impacts achieved.
... While vital to the sustainability of the sector, trust is also recognised as being volatile and highly susceptible to disruption by scandals and negative media coverage (Hind, 2017;Lalák & Harrison-Byrne, 2019;LeClair, 2019). It is one of the most influential criteria donors and funders use when deciding which charities to support (Scurlock, Dolsak, & Prakash, 2020) and good reputation, particularly when it is well established, is valuable (Szper & Prakash, 2011). Therefore, the importance of acting appropriately, having goodgovernance processes, being accountable and transparent, avoiding scandals, dealing with (even possibly unfair) media attention and, if problems do arise, managing them quickly and effectively (both from operational and communication perspectives) is crucial in safeguarding reputation and maintaining (or re-establishing damaged) trust. ...
Article
Full-text available
Trust in charities is critical in terms of the health of the sector, and also in relation to the establishment and maintenance of social cohesiveness. Moreover, lack of trust can not only damage the charity sector (having negative impacts on public perceptions and donor giving) but can also undermine attempts at building social capital. Yet, how trust is defined, the various forms that it takes and how it is established (or re‐established, if lost) is unclear. This paper explores the various conceptions of what trust is, applies them to charities and examines trust in relation to the sustainability of the sector. A key finding is that trust has many dimensions, and charities (and the sector as a whole) need to work on a range of fronts on an ongoing basis to protect and build perceptions of trustworthiness (‘many stones can form an arch’). As a consequence, the paper presents an outline research agenda (in the form of four key questions) that encourages future researchers to enhance understanding of the important interplay between trust and charities more fully. This focuses on the relationship between charities and beneficiaries, how trust‐building activities vary with charity size/area of activity, the potential role of communicating service delivery and what ‘good regulation’ might look like.
Article
Zusammenfassung Das Verhältnis zwischen Staat und Zivilgesellschaft ist in letzter Zeit komplexer geworden. In einigen Ländern hat sich das Verhältnis derart verschlechtert, dass von einem shrinking space für die Zivilgesellschaft gesprochen wird. Diese Diagnose gilt jedoch hauptsächlich für autoritäre und illiberale politische Systeme, die der Zivilgesellschaft mit Repression begegnen. Zivilgesellschaftliche Räume schrumpfen jedoch auch in Demokratien: weniger durch direkte Unterdrückung, sondern durch eine politische Stagnation, die durch eine politische Vernachlässigung der Zivilgesellschaft verursacht wird. Diese führt zu einer schleichenden Erosion zivilgesellschaftlicher Kapazitäten und stellt eine zunehmende gesellschaftspolitische Herausforderung dar. Als Gegenmaßnahme plädieren wir für eine aktive Reformpolitik, wobei neuere Modelle der rechtlichen Rahmenbedingungen und Regulierungen im Mittelpunkt stehen sollten, die auf eine bessere Fassung der funktionalen Differenzierung zivilgesellschaftlicher Organisationen zielen.
Article
This study presents a novel evidential reasoning (ER) prediction model called MAKER-RIMER to examine how different features embedded in Twitter posts (tweets) can predict the number of retweets achieved during an electoral campaign. The tweets posted by the two most voted candidates during the official campaign for the 2017 Ecuadorian Presidential election were used for this research. For each tweet, five features including type of tweet, emotion, URL, hashtag, and date are identified and coded to predict if tweets are of either high or low impact. The main contributions of the new proposed model include its suitability to analyse tweet datasets based on likelihood analysis of data. The model is interpretable, and the prediction process relies only on the use of available data. The experimental results show that MAKER-RIMER performed better, in terms of misclassification error, when compared against other predictive machine learning approaches. In addition, the model allows observing which features of the candidates’ tweets are linked to high and low impact. Tweets containing allusions to the contender candidate, either with positive or negative connotations, without hashtags, and written towards the end of the campaign, were persistently those with the highest impact. URLs, on the other hand, is the only variable that performs differently for the two candidates in terms of achieving high impact. MAKER-RIMER can provide campaigners of political parties or candidates with a tool to measure how features of tweets are predictors of their impact, which can be useful to tailor Twitter content during electoral campaigns.
Article
This study investigated the relationship between stakeholder enacted crisis communication and organizational crisis response. Through textual analysis, the reputation repair strategies that head coach Urban Meyer utilized in his four public statements regarding the Zach Smith scandal were identified. Next, 10,000 tweets from Ohio-based stakeholders were content analyzed to examine the extent to which stakeholders mirror the selected strategies employed by an individual enveloped in a crisis and amplify them through their own social media networks. Results showed that stakeholders engaged in three primary behaviors: rallying together by using the ingratiation and reminder strategies; mirroring some of Meyer’s official strategies; and utilizing their own strategies to attribute blame to other, external parties. Implications regarding how stakeholders utilize Twitter, itself, during a crisis were also proffered.
Article
This paper charts the rapid rise of data science methodologies in manuscripts published in top journals for third sector scholarship, indicating their growing importance to research in the field. We draw on critical quantitative theory (QuantCrit) to challenge the assumed neutrality of data science insights that are especially prone to misrepresentation and unbalanced treatment of sub-groups (i.e., those marginalized and minoritized because of their race, gender, etc.). We summarize a set of challenges that result in biases within machine learning methods that are increasingly deployed in scientific inquiry. As a means of proactively addressing these concerns, we introduce the “Wells-Du Bois Protocol,” a tool that scholars can use to determine if their research achieves a baseline level of bias mitigation. Ultimately, this work aims to facilitate the diffusion of key insights from the field of QuantCrit by showing how new computational methodologies can be improved by coupling quantitative work with humanistic and reflexive approaches to inquiry. The protocol ultimately aims to help safeguard third sector scholarship from systematic biases that can be introduced through the adoption of machine learning methods.
Article
Media plays a major role in molding US public opinions about Muslims. This paper assesses the effect of 9/11 events on the US media's framing of the Muslim nonprofit sector. Overall it finds that the press was more likely to represent the Muslim nonprofit negatively post 9/11. However, post 9/11, the media framing of Muslim nonprofits was mixed. While the media was more likely to associate Muslim nonprofits and terrorism, they were also more likely to represent Muslim nonprofits as organizations that faced persecution because of Islamophobia, government scrutiny, or hate attacks against them. These media frames may have contributed to public perceptions that Muslim organizations support terrorism while also raising the alarm amongst various stakeholders that the government and the general public are persecuting the Muslim nonprofit sector.
Article
Emphasising the need to rethink accountability in the light of the #MeToo movement, this study examines how public discourses on sexual misconduct in the non-profit sector have transformed societal perceptions of NGO accountability. The study contributes to research debates about the underlying principles of the NGO social contract, the intellectual problematics of accountability and the role of ‘the Other’ in accountability conduct. The analysis of social media and investigations related to sexual scandals in thirteen organisations reveals how access to social media and hashtag activism in the midst of the social movement provided visibility to the cases of misconduct, gave rise to accountability forums and empowered calls to hold organisations to account. The study shows how the spotlight of public attention has gradually shifted the perception of sexual misconduct as an occasional, but inevitable, sectoral malfunction towards a widening debate over the moral basis of NGO activism and the impacts on the lives of vulnerable NGO beneficiaries. This development has then amplified the escalated demand to transform approaches to NGO accountability from pragmatic procedures of increased control and demonstrable measures of quality assurance to more reflective methods of intellectual accountability and critical self-assessment, emphasising the behavioural consciousness of accountable actors. Finally, the study reflects on how the lessons learned from the #MeToo movement impact NGOs in their capacity to exercise holistic accountability.
Article
Full-text available
Non‐profit organisations operate with the advantage of a generally positive social image. Workers and managerial employees of nonprofits are commonly thought of as altruistic, trustworthy and respectable actors who assist their communities. However, the non‐profit sector has faced several notable scandals and crises that have tested this positive social image. This paper reports on an analysis of the positive social image, which we call a sector ‘halo’ and its durability in the face of organisational crisis. Based on a sample from Amazon's Mechanical Turk, the analysis confirms the general positive social image of non‐profit organisations when compared to their private for‐profit and government sector peers, who possess lower levels of trust. However, a survey experiment reveals that given a crisis scenario regarding a data breach incident, the ‘halo’ entirely disappears. Our study improves on the literature regarding trust and organisational reputation and highlights the importance of sector ownership and perceived differences pre‐ and postcrisis.
Article
Full-text available
This paper examines the effect of scandalous news on corporate reputation of rival firms from the same industry and investigates the effects’ differences in China and in Europe, providing evidence that scandalous news influences not only the target company itself, but also other companies from the industry. For this purpose, the paper uses the 2015 Volkswagen emissions scandal as a natural experiment. Volkswagen, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Audi and Porsche were selected as sample companies. To measure reputational spillover effects, cumulative abnormal stock returns and sales growth of the sample companies are calculated and compared before and after the announcement of the scandal. The methodology adopted for estimating stock returns is the event study method, which measures the impact of a specific event on the value of a firm. Stock price data is collected from Bloomberg and used to calculate cumulative abnormal returns of the sample companies. Furthermore, difference-in-differences estimation is used to compare the sample companies’ sales growth before and after the scandal. Volkswagen, Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz are included in the treatment group, whereas 29 non-German car manufacturers were selected as the control group. The results show that overall rival companies were affected by the scandal, cumulative abnormal returns declined by 6% and 10% for BMW and Mercedes-Benz respectively, showing the contagion effect. However, the sales growths of these two manufacturers greatly increased, specifically on the Chinese market for Mercedes-Benz and on the European market for BMW, proving dominance of the competitive effect and differences of the reputational spillover effects across countries.
Article
Full-text available
Ethnographies involve the exploration of social phenomena in the field, typically for an extended period of time. Traditionally, ethnographers listen to, observe, and directly communicate with the subjects of their research. At its essence, ethnography is about storytelling, and the data are collected through human interaction. With the development of new technologies, and with the plethora of social media platforms, the manner in which many stories are told has become significantly more varied. Accordingly, digital ethnography has emerged as a new approach to conducting ethnographies. In the present study, we focus specifically on the use of digital ethnographies in third sector studies. Building on our own experience using digital ethnography, collecting data from Facebook pages and groups, blogs, and websites of nonprofit organizations and individual volunteers and donors, we describe two different ways of conducting digital ethnography: One, at the micro-level, explores human milk donations to nonprofit milk banks. The second, at the meso-level, explores a community of migrant workers. We aim to outline the potential, limitations, and ethical considerations of this methodology.
Article
Full-text available
Brands are increasingly part of how international aid and development Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) operate, but there are challenges in aligning NGO brand value across diverse stakeholders. This research explores how key decision makers within one major NGO – Oxfam—construct the challenges of brand value alignment, using an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis methodology. Three master-themes emerge demonstrating key tensions around aligning NGOs brand value: the difficulty of balancing competing stakeholder needs, the internal cultural conflict around branding, and the existential dilemma underlying the societal effectiveness of NGOs. This paper proposes that NGOs can better navigate these intra—brand tensions using Brand-as-Purpose as an organizing principle; framing shared identity, creating a dynamic container for stakeholder interests and cultivating Moral Capital strongly anchored in increasing recipient wellbeing. This paper is one of the first pieces of research which explores how NGOs make sense of aligning brand value in the context of complex stakeholder cultures and recipient sovereignty. Brand-as Purpose is put forward as an organizing principle to help balance three key tensions around brand value alignment. This paper proposes that Moral Capital anchored in recipient wellbeing underpins NGO brand value and societal legitimacy and needs to be paramount in how NGO’s establish and legitimize their brands.
Article
In 2018, one of the largest international development non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the world, Oxfam GB, became engulfed in a scandal which quickly spread to other international NGOs (INGOs). The crisis arose from the sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment (SEAH) of the beneficiaries and staff of leading INGOs and caused significant reputational harm to these organizations amid declining public trust and intense political and media scrutiny. The crisis raises significant questions about the credibility of INGOs and the policies necessary to restore public trust. This article reviews the background to the crisis and the responses to it from Oxfam GB & Oxfam International, by other INGOs and by the funders and regulators tasked with overseeing them, focusing on the United Kingdom. It then analyses these actions in the context of an analytical framework proposed in Gourevitch, Lake & Stein (Eds)(2012). It argues that the Oxfam scandal of 2018 marks a fundamental shift in the manner in which INGOs must promote accountability and transparency, based on high-quality, culturally-inclusive, learning-based management.
Article
The phenomenon of closing civic space has adversely impacted international non‐governmental organization (INGO) funding. We argue that individual private donors can be important in sustaining the operations of INGOs working in repressive contexts. Individual donors do not use the same performance‐based metrics as official aid donors. Rather, trust can be an important component of individual donor support for nonprofits working towards difficult goals. How does trust in charitable organizations influence individuals' preferences to donate, especially when these groups face crackdown? Using a simulated market for philanthropic donations based on data from a nationally representative sample of individuals in the United States who regularly donate to charity, we find that trust in INGOs matters substantially in shaping donor preferences. Donor profiles with high levels of social trust are likely to donate to INGOs with friendly relationships with host governments. This support holds steady if INGOs face criticism or crackdown. In contrast, donor profiles with lower levels of social trust prefer to donate to organizations that do not face criticism or crackdown abroad. The global crackdown on NGOs may thus possibly sour NGOs' least trusting individual donors. Our findings have practical implications for INGOs raising funds from individuals amid closing civic space. Research on international giving by individuals, especially in the era of closing civic space, is not meant to find answers that can act as substitutes for strategic policy responses, especially by official aid donors and foundations. However, many INGOs are under immediate threat, and individual‐level philanthropy can help support these organizations.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Recently, increasing attention has been attracted to Social Networking Sentiment Analysis. Twitter as one of the most fashional social networking platforms has been researched as a hot topic in this domain. Normally, sentiment analysis is regarded as a classification problem. Training a classifier with tweets data, there is a large amount of noise due to tweets' shortness, marks, irregular words etc. In this work we explore the impact pre-processing methods make on twitter sentiment classification. We evaluate the effects of URLs, negation , repeated letters, stemming and lemmatization. Experimental results on the Stanford Twitter Sentiment Dataset show that sentiment classification accuracy rises when URLs features reservation, negation transformation and repeated letters normalization are employed while descends when stemming and lemmatization are applied. Moreover, we get a better result by augmenting the original feature space with bigram and emotions features. Comprehensive application of these measures makes us achieve classification accuracy of 85.5%.
Article
Full-text available
We demonstrate that exposure to the news media causes Americans to take public stands on specific issues, join national policy conversations, and express themselves publicly—all key components of democratic politics—more often than they would otherwise. After recruiting 48 mostly small media outlets, we chose groups of these outlets to write and publish articles on subjects we approved, on dates we randomly assigned. We estimated the causal effect on proximal measures, such as website pageviews and Twitter discussion of the articles’ specific subjects, and distal ones, such as national Twitter conversation in broad policy areas. Our intervention increased discussion in each broad policy area by ~62.7% (relative to a day’s volume), accounting for 13,166 additional posts over the treatment week, with similar effects across population subgroups.
Article
Full-text available
This paper discusses the constructivist, negotiated perspective to INGO accountability. According to this perspective, INGO accountability is a process of mutual negotiations between different INGO stakeholders who hold different accountability demands. Acknowledging that this perspective provides a good starting point for a better understanding of INGO accountability, we comment on this conceptualization of INGO accountability. Through an analysis of accountability instruments and procedures, we examine closely how the demands of the INGO’s stakeholders are embedded in particular relationships of accountability which are sustained by particular accountability logics. From this analysis, we point out that, due to the differences that exist between these accountability logics, processes of negotiation are likely to be filled with complex tensions and trade-offs. Moreover, as some accountability logics are much clearer and more compelling than others, a constructivist perspective on INGO accountability does not automatically coincide with an understanding of INGO accountability in which primordial importance is given to the beneficiaries. http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11266-016-9759-3 http://rdcu.be/nxUy
Article
Full-text available
Centrality is one of the most studied concepts in social network analysis. There is a huge literature regarding centrality measures, as ways to identify the most relevant users in a social network. The challenge is to find measures that can be computed efficiently, and that can be able to classify the users according to relevance criteria as close as possible to reality. We address this problem in the context of the Twitter network, an online social networking service with millions of users and an impressive flow of messages that are published and spread daily by interactions between users. Twitter has different types of users, but the greatest utility lies in finding the most influential ones. The purpose of this article is to collect and classify the different Twitter influence measures that exist so far in literature. These measures are very diverse. Some are based on simple metrics provided by the Twitter API, while others are based on complex mathematical models. Several measures are based on the PageRank algorithm, traditionally used to rank the websites on the Internet. Some others consider the timeline of publication, others the content of the messages, some are focused on specific topics, and others try to make predictions. We consider all these aspects, and some additional ones. Furthermore, we include measures of activity and popularity, the traditional mechanisms to correlate measures, and some important aspects of computational complexity for this particular context.
Article
Full-text available
This paper summarizes the goals, organization and results of the first RepLab competitive evaluation campaign for Online Reputation Management Systems (RepLab 2012). RepLab focused on the reputation of companies, and asked participant systems to annotate different types of information on tweets containing the names of several companies. Two tasks were proposed: a profiling task, where tweets had to be annotated for relevance and polarity for reputation, and a monitoring task, where tweets had to be clustered thematically and clusters had to be ordered by priority (for reputation management purposes). The gold standard con-sisted of annotations made by reputation management experts, a feature which turns the RepLab 2012 test collection in a useful source not only to evaluate systems, but also to reach a better understanding of the notions of polarity and priority in the context of reputation management.
Article
Full-text available
Although accountability systems are established to ensure organizational adherence to financial and ethical standards for nonprofit organizations, the reality of whether such standards make a difference to donors has not been measured. This article discusses the current landscape of accountability systems and accountability ratings and describes a model for estimating the effect of ratings systems on donor behavior within the theoretical context of information asymmetry. Hypotheses are tested with nonprofit ratings for New York charities from the Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance to estimate the effect of accountability ratings on the amount of contributions an organization receives. Results indicate that the Wise Giving Alliance "pass" ratings have a statistically significant effect on the contributions received; however, "did not pass" ratings are nonsignificant. The study is important for academics as well as practitioners who are monitoring time and money spent on accountability issues.
Article
Full-text available
Twitter is a relatively new social media website and a good option for celebrities who want to chat with their fans without having to give away personal access information. This paper presents an analysis of a sample of the Twitter accounts of 12 entertainment media celebrities, 6 males and 6 females, all taken from 2009-2012 Twitter feeds. Since little is known about Twitter, a grounded theory approach for this study was used. Twitter can be used to learn about parasocial interaction, the unreciprocated interaction between individuals of differing status and knowledge of one another. This analysis provides a first step in that endeavor. Results showed that there was a great deal of variety from celebrity to celebrity in the ways Twitter was being used. All coded celebrities used Twitter to communicate both with other celebrities and with members of the public or fans about their work as well as personal likes and dislikes, conveying information that revealed personal activities that are not typically shared in other forums. Although fans connecting with celebrities via Twitter have some limited access to communicate with the celebrity, we conclude that the relationship is still parasocial in spite of the occasional reply a fan might receive. Our analysis showed that for celebrities who were using Twitter, the dialogue is serious, meaningful, and appears to have impact for those participating. In the last two to three years, social media have proliferated on the Internet. Web sites like MySpace, Facebook, and LiveJournal made it possible for people who had minimal Internet skills to set up personal pages wherein they could share a daily posting of thoughts, philosophies and ideals, photographs, web links and other items of interest with an audience. Celebrities also have availed themselves of social media, but in each of the above cases, in order to give access to audience members or fans, the application often gave away an undesirable level of access to personal information. MySpace is a good example of this. On one's MySpace page are a list of friends and their pages, personal photographs, and other potentially
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Several messages express opinions about events, products, and services, political views or even their author's emotional state and mood. Sentiment analysis has been used in several applications including analysis of the repercussions of events in social networks, analysis of opinions about products and services, and simply to better understand aspects of social communication in Online Social Networks (OSNs). There are multiple methods for measuring sentiments, including lexical-based approaches and supervised machine learning methods. Despite the wide use and popularity of some methods, it is unclear which method is better for identifying the polarity (i.e., positive or negative) of a message as the current literature does not provide a method of comparison among existing methods. Such a comparison is crucial for understanding the potential limitations, advantages, and disadvantages of popular methods in analyzing the content of OSNs messages. Our study aims at filling this gap by presenting comparisons of eight popular sentiment analysis methods in terms of coverage (i.e., the fraction of messages whose sentiment is identified) and agreement (i.e., the fraction of identified sentiments that are in tune with ground truth). We develop a new method that combines existing approaches, providing the best coverage results and competitive agreement. We also present a free Web service called iFeel, which provides an open API for accessing and comparing results across different sentiment methods for a given text.
Article
Full-text available
This article examines the application of organizational reputation to public administration. Organizational reputation is defined as a set of beliefs about an organizations capacities, intentions, history, and mission that are embedded in a network of multiple audiences. The authors assert that the way in which organizational reputations are formed and subsequently cultivated is fundamental to understanding the role of public administration in a democracy. A review of the basic assumptions and empirical work on organizational reputation in the public sector identifies a series of stylized facts that extends our understanding of the functioning of public agencies. InparticuUr, the authors examine the relationship between organizational reputation and bureaucratic autonomy.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper summarizes the goals, organization, and results of the second RepLab competitive evaluation campaign for Online Rep-utation Management Systems (RepLab 2013). RepLab focused on the process of monitoring the reputation of companies and individuals, and asked participant systems to annotate different types of information on tweets containing the names of several companies: first tweets had to be classified as related or unrelated to the entity; relevant tweets had to be classified according to their polarity for reputation (Does the content of the tweet have positive or negative implications for the reputation of the entity?), clustered in coherent topics, and clusters had to be ranked according to their priority (potential reputation problems had to come first). The gold standard consists of more than 140,000 tweets annotated by a group of trained annotators supervised and monitored by reputation experts.
Article
Full-text available
In this paper, we describe how we created two state-of-the-art SVM classifiers, one to detect the sentiment of messages such as tweets and SMS (message-level task) and one to detect the sentiment of a term within a submissions stood first in both tasks on tweets, obtaining an F-score of 69.02 in the message-level task and 88.93 in the term-level task. We implemented a variety of surface-form, semantic, and sentiment features. with sentiment-word hashtags, and one from tweets with emoticons. In the message-level task, the lexicon-based features provided a gain of 5 F-score points over all others. Both of our systems can be replicated us available resources.
Article
Full-text available
The idea of organizational reputation is intuitive and simple in its common usage. However, it is surprisingly complex when employed and investigated in management research, as evidenced by the multiple definitions, conceptualizations, and operationalizations that have emerged across studies. The authors see the past decade as a formative phase of the research, characterized by attempts to bring theoretical coherence and rigor to the subject area. In their review of the management literature, the authors focus on this formative period in particular. They attempt to inspire and guide management researchers by clarifying what organizational reputation is. In particular, they identify three dominant conceptualizations, namely, that reputation consists of familiarity with the organization, beliefs about what to expect from the organization in the future, and impressions about the organization’s favorability. The final part of the review is an overview of recent empirical findings in the management literature pertaining to the effects or causes of organizational reputation. The authors conclude by drawing attention to some important directions for future research, including the needs to investigate organizational reputation as multidimensional and dynamic and to model its antecedents and effects as more complex than the unidirectional models typically proposed.
Article
Full-text available
This article examines the concept of the corporate “social license,” which governs the extent to which a corporation is constrained to meet societal expectations and avoid activities that societies (or influential elements within them) deem unacceptable, whether or not those expectations are embodied in law. It examines the social license empirically, as it relates to one social problem–environmental protection–and as it relates to one particular industry: pulp and paper manufacturing. It shows try the social license is important, the circumstances in which it may encourage companies to go “beyond compliance” with regulation, how its terms are monitored and enforced, and how it interacts with what we term the regulatory and economic licenses. Overall, this research demonstrates that corporate environmental behavior cannot be explained purely in terms of instrumental threats and moral obligations to comply with the law, and that the increasing incidence of “beyond compliance” corporate behavior can be better explained in terms of the interplay between social pressures and economic constraints.
Article
Full-text available
We examine sentiment analysis on Twitter data. The contributions of this paper are: (1) We introduce POS-specific prior polarity fea- tures. (2) We explore the use of a tree kernel to obviate the need for tedious feature engineer- ing. The new features (in conjunction with previously proposed features) and the tree ker- nel perform approximately at the same level, both outperforming the state-of-the-art base- line. kernel based model. For the feature based model we use some of the features proposed in past liter- ature and propose new features. For the tree ker- nel based model we design a new tree representa- tion for tweets. We use a unigram model, previously shown to work well for sentiment analysis for Twit- ter data, as our baseline. Our experiments show that a unigram model is indeed a hard baseline achieving over 20% over the chance baseline for both classifi- cation tasks. Our feature based model that uses only 100 features achieves similar accuracy as the uni- gram model that uses over 10,000 features. Our tree kernel based model outperforms both these models by a significant margin. We also experiment with a combination of models: combining unigrams with our features and combining our features with the tree kernel. Both these combinations outperform the un- igram baseline by over 4% for both classification tasks. In this paper, we present extensive feature analysis of the 100 features we propose. Our ex- periments show that features that have to do with Twitter-specific features (emoticons, hashtags etc.) add value to the classifier but only marginally. Fea- tures that combine prior polarity of words with their parts-of-speech tags are most important for both the classification tasks. Thus, we see that standard nat- ural language processing tools are useful even in a genre which is quite different from the genre on which they were trained (newswire). Furthermore, we also show that the tree kernel model performs roughly as well as the best feature based models, even though it does not require detailed feature en-
Article
Full-text available
Crisis managers benefit from understanding how crisis communication can be used to protect reputational assets during a crisis. Situational Crisis Communication Theory (SCCT) offers a framework for understanding this dynamic. SCCT provides a mechanism for anticipating how stakeholders will react to a crisis in terms of the reputational threat posed by the crisis. Moreover, SCCT projects how people will react to the crisis response strategies used to manage the crisis. From its empirical research emerges a set of evidence-based crisis communication guidelines. The development of SCCT is discussed along with the presentation of its guidelines for crisis communication.
Article
Full-text available
Purpose – Crisis managers believe in the value of a favorable, pre‐crisis reputation. The prior reputation can create a halo effect that protects an organization during a crisis. The prior reputation/halo might work as a shield that deflects the potential reputational damage from a crisis. Or the prior reputation/halo might encourage stakeholders to give the organization the benefit of the doubt in the crisis (reduce attributions of crisis responsibility). Oddly, researchers have had little luck in producing a halo effect for prior reputation in crisis situations. The purpose of this paper is to present two studies designed to test if the halo effect could occur and which of the two dynamics of the prior reputation halo best serve to explain the benefits of a favorable, pre‐crisis reputation. Design/methodology/approach – The research focuses on a set of studies conducted to illustrate the halo effect and to explore how it serves to protect an organization during a crisis. The implications of the findings for post‐crisis communication are discussed. Findings – The halo effect for prior reputation in crisis was created. The halo operated in a limited range for organizations with very favorable prior reputations. The data also supported the halo as shield dynamic rather than the halo as benefit of the doubt. Originality/value – The paper provides insight into the area of reputation and crisis management.
Article
Full-text available
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to contribute to understanding of crisis communication application and theory by analyzing online reactions of discussion board participants to assess the effectiveness of an apology issued online. Design/methodology/approach – This paper uses a content analysis of naturally-occurring online reactions to an apology issued as a crisis response strategy. The Janis-Fadner Coefficient of Imbalance was used to quantify the magnitude of negative and positive reactions to the apology. Findings – Most posts indicated acceptance of the apology and positive purchase intentions, thus confirming its effectiveness in managing the crisis as prescribed in Situational Crisis Communication Theory. Analysis of rejection reactions provided insights into additional actions crisis managers might take in this situation and how organisations might make their crisis communication more interactive in an online environment. Research limitations/implications – The study is limited by the focus on people responding to the apology online. It does show the potential value of online responses as a data source for crisis communication research. Practical implications – The paper demonstrates the utility of the research method for future studies designed to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of crisis communication strategies. Real time monitoring may signal if the response strategy is effective and, if not, reveal stakeholder concerns that should be addressed in follow-up responses. Originality/value – The paper provides insight into how online comments can be used to evaluate reactions to apologies used in a crisis. The method can be helpful when crisis managers have access to online reactions to their crisis communication.
Article
Full-text available
This paper presents a study of the life cycle of news articles posted online. We describe the interplay between website visitation patterns and social media reactions to news content. We show that we can use this hybrid observation method to characterize distinct classes of articles. We also find that social media reactions can help predict future visitation patterns early and accurately. We validate our methods using qualitative analysis as well as quantitative analysis on data from a large international news network, for a set of articles generating more than 3,000,000 visits and 200,000 social media reactions. We show that it is possible to model accurately the overall traffic articles will ultimately receive by observing the first ten to twenty minutes of social media reactions. Achieving the same prediction accuracy with visits alone would require to wait for three hours of data. We also describe significant improvements on the accuracy of the early prediction of shelf-life for news stories.
Article
Full-text available
How are nonprofit organizations utilizing social media to engage in advocacy work? We address this question by investigating the social media use of 188 501(c)(3) advocacy organizations. After briefly examining the types of social media technologies employed, we turn to an in-depth examination of the organizations’ use of Twitter. This in-depth message-level analysis is twofold: a content analysis that examines the prevalence of previously identified communicative and advocacy constructs in nonprofits’ social media messages; and an inductive analysis that explores the unique features and dynamics of social media-based advocacy and identifies new organizational practices and forms of communication heretofore unseen in the literature.
Article
Full-text available
Microblogging is a new form of communication in which users can describe their current status in short posts distributed by instant messages, mobile phones, email or the Web. Twitter, a popular microblogging tool has seen a lot of growth since it launched in October, 2006. In this paper, we present our observations of the microblogging phenomena by studying the topological and geographical properties of Twitter's social network. We find that people use microblogging to talk about their daily activities and to seek or share information. Finally, we analyze the user intentions associated at a community level and show how users with similar intentions connect with each other.
Article
Full-text available
The crucial interaction between humanitarian agencies and the media has been researched in the past but today it continues to evolve and change—and not for the better. This article, drawing on accounts from communications managers working inside the world's major aid agencies (Red Cross, Oxfam, Save the Children, World Vision, CARE and Médecins sans Frontières), examines how communication strategies designed to raise awareness, funds and support have assimilated to today's pervasive “media logic”. In the increasingly crowded and competitive field of humanitarian agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) now seek to “brand” themselves in the media; they purposefully use celebrities and produce regionalized and personalized “media packages” to court media attention; and they reflexively expend time and resources warding off increased risks of mediated scandals. In such ways, aid agencies have become increasingly embroiled in the practices and predilections of the global media and can find their organizational integrity impugned and communication aims compromised. These developments imperil the very ethics and project of global humanitarianism that aid agencies historically have done so much to promote.
Article
Full-text available
Value changes and the rapid emergence of media innovations (internet, social web) in society lead to an institutionalization of crisis communication, in which especially new media play a crucial role. The key contributions of the paper include deepening and refocusing the theoretical foundations of crisis communication by experimentally analyzing the effects of traditional and social-media strategies on the recipients’ perceptions of reputation; and by analyzing the effects or crisis responses on the recipients’ secondary crisis communications (e.g., sharing information and leaving a message) and reactions (e.g., willingness to boycott). The results indicated that the medium matters more than the message. For all three dependent measures – reputation, secondary crisis communication and reactions – main effects of medium occurred, whereas the message had only a significant main effect on secondary crisis reactions.
Article
Full-text available
This paper analyzes, from a cross-national perspective, publicized incidents of wrongdoing by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). A content analysis of media reports of scandals over the past four years involving NGOs was conducted to identify issues and trends in governance and management problems. The analysis is confined to NGOs that are involved in the financing and/or delivery of health and human services in order to facilitate comparisons. International and U.S. cases of wrongdoing, covering the gamut of embezzlement to mismanagement, are identified and the common elements and unique features of these cases are examined. The underlying problems that allowed these cases to occur and their implications in regard to NGO credibility and public trust are identified and options for enhancing accountability explored.
Article
Full-text available
The rapid diffusion of "microblogging" services such as Twitter is ushering in a new era of possibilities for organizations to communicate with and engage their core stakeholders and the general public. To enhance understanding of the communicative functions microblogging serves for organizations, this study examines the Twitter utilization practices of the 100 largest nonprofit organizations in the United States. The analysis reveals there are three key functions of microblogging updates-"information," "community," and "action." Though the informational use of microblogging is extensive, nonprofit organizations are better at using Twitter to strategically engage their stakeholders via dialogic and community-building practices than they have been with traditional websites. The adoption of social media appears to have engendered new paradigms of public engagement.
Article
Full-text available
Recent research [1] has suggested that coreness, and not degree, constitutes a better topological descriptor to identifying influential spreaders in complex networks. This hypothesis has been verified in the context of disease spreading. Here, we instead focus on rumor spreading models, which are more suited for social contagion and information propagation. To this end, we perform extensive computer simulations on top of several real-world networks and find opposite results. Namely, we show that the spreading capabilities of the nodes do not depend on their $k$-core index, which instead determines whether or not a given node prevents the diffusion of a rumor to a system-wide scale. Our findings are relevant both for sociological studies of contagious dynamics and for the design of efficient commercial viral processes.
Article
How are nonprofit organizations utilizing social media to engage in advocacy work? We address this question by investigating the social media use of 188 501(c)(3) advocacy organizations. After briefly examining the types of social media technologies employed, we turn to an in-depth examination of the organizations’ use of Twitter. This in-depth message-level analysis is twofold: A content analysis that examines the prevalence of previously identified communicative and advocacy constructs in nonprofits’ social media messages; and an inductive analysis that explores the unique features and dynamics of social media-based advocacy and identifies new organizational practices and forms of communication heretofore unseen in the literature.
Article
Despite decades of research on the persuasive effects of propaganda, little is known about opinion change in the wake of journalistic accounts of scandal involving public officials. To what extent and under what conditions do opinions change in the wake of information conveyed through newspapers? We conducted five experiments to assess how publicizing scandal changes evaluations of the specific public officials involved and attitudes towards government in general. In each study, subjects drawn from voter files and lists of party activists were mailed "special edition" investigative newspapers that reported on scandals involving public officials. Feature stories depicted some public officials as villains and others as heroes. Treatment and control groups were interviewed approximately two weeks later. We find significant effects on both voters and activists. The most striking pattern is the change in net favorability of the public officials implicated in the scandals. Evaluations of the villains deteriorated and evaluations of the heroes improved. Changes in evaluations are especially large when scandals implicated public officials with whom respondents had little prior familiarity.
Article
This study develops and validates a model that evaluates the effect of trust on individual monetary donations to charitable organizations (COs). Data were collected in Saudi Arabia using a two-stage approach and were analyzed via structural equation modeling. Data on psychosocial variables were collected in the first stage, and data on behavior were collected in the second stage, 4 weeks later. The findings confirm the study’s novel multidimensional perspective of trust in the context of individual monetary donations to COs in Saudi Arabia. The results validate the view that trust is present only when the individuals concerned are disposed to trust others and when they believe that the COs can conduct their charitable mission, are honest in the use of their donations, and prioritize beneficiaries’ rights. Individuals’ trust in COs affects both the intention to donate and future monetary donation behavior.
Article
Foreign aid contributes to about 10% of gross domestic product (GDP) of developing countries. To distribute aid in recipient countries, Western donors increasingly rely on nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). Yet, since the mid-1990s, 39 developing countries have adopted laws restricting the inflow of foreign aid to NGOs operating in their jurisdictions. In response to these restrictions, have bilateral donors reduced aid, either as a punishment or because they cannot find appropriate NGOs for aid delivery? We explore this question by examining a panel of 134 aid-receiving countries for the years 1993-2012. We find that all else equal, the adoption of a restrictive NGO finance law is associated with a 32% decline in bilateral aid inflows in subsequent years. These findings hold even after controlling for levels of democracy and civil liberties, which suggests that aid reduction responds to the removal of NGOs from aid delivery chains, and not to democracy recession.
Article
The social media era ushers in an increasingly “noisy” information environment that renders it more difficult for nonprofit advocacy organizations to make their voices heard. How then can an organization gain attention on social media? We address this question by building and testing a model of the effectiveness of the Twitter use of advocacy organizations. Using number of retweets and number of favorites as proxies of attention, we test our hypotheses with a 12-month panel dataset that collapses by month and organization the 219,915 tweets sent by 145 organizations in 2013. We find that attention is strongly associated with the size of an organization’s network, its frequency of speech, and the number of conversations it joins. We also find a seemingly contradictory relationship between different measures of attention and an organization’s targeting and connecting strategy.
Article
Andreas Ortmann and Mark Schlesinger, in their article “Trust, Repute, and the Role of Nonprofit Enterprise,” examine what they term “the trust hypothesis,” namely “the claim that asymmetric information in the markets for certain goods and services can explain the existence of nonprofit enterprise in those markets” (this volume). There is much that is sensible in what they say, and they have performed a valuable service in pulling together some of the more recent empirical literature on asymmetric information in markets heavily populated with nonprofit firms. I have some concerns, however, both with respect to the authors’ formulation of the trust hypothesis and with their approach to its verification.
Article
Previous research suggests sport-for-development organizations strategically aim to engage people through social media in hopes of generating increased offline support (Thorpe & Rinehart, 2013). Using the framework set forth by Lovejoy and Saxton (2012), the purpose of this study was to explore how nonprofit organizations use Twitter to disseminate information, build engagement, and facilitate action. A content analysis of 3,233 tweets revealed a larger proportion of interactive communication, yet one-way communication was the most common function. Overall, the use of social media to facilitate action among stakeholders was scarce, but the way organizations used Twitter to provide information, interact with followers, and create a call for action varied considerably among them. Interestingly, these differences were not associated with annual revenue, organizational age, targeted social issues, or number of countries of operation. This study has important theoretical and practical implications, and provides a first look at how sport-for-development organizations use Twitter.
Article
Social media are increasingly the vehicle of choice for nonprofit organizations in their efforts to mobilize, educate, and engage large, often geographically dispersed audiences of current and potential supporters. With limited audience attention spans and an increasingly “noisy” information environment, organizations’ most immediate concern is to capture the audience’s attention. How does an organization gain supporters’ attention with its social media messages? We address this question by building and testing a model of the effectiveness of the Twitter use of 145 advocacy organizations. Using number of retweets and number of favorites as proxies of “attention,” we test our hypotheses with a 12-month panel dataset—this organization-month level dataset collapses by month and organization the 219,915 tweets that were sent by the 145 organizations over the entire 12 months of 2013. Our data analyses reveal interesting patterns in terms of who and what gets attention. Specifically, we find that attention is positively associated with the size of an organization’s network (i.e., number of followers) and its volume of speech (i.e., number of tweets sent). We also find a seemingly contradictory relationship between different measures of attention and an organization’s targeting strategy (e.g., retweets of others’ tweets).
Article
This study traces the rhythms of news storytelling on Twitter via the #egypt hashtag. Using computational discourse analysis, we examine news values and the form of news exhibited in #egypt from January 25 to February 25, 2011, pre- and post-resignation of Hosni Mubarak. Results point to a hybridity of old and newer news values, with emphasis on the drama of instantaneity, the crowdsourcing of elites, solidarity, and ambience. The resulting stream of news combines news, opinion, and emotion to the point where discerning one from the other is difficult and doing so misses the point. We offer a theory of affective news to explain the distinctive character of content produced by networked publics in times of political crisis.
Article
■Media hypes are a well known phenomenon. They occur on a regular basis and attract much media attention, but there is very little knowledge about them. This article supplements Vasterman's analysis of the phenomenon and presents new empirical evidence. Through a case study of five Danish media hypes occurring between 2000 and 2005, the article shows that not every event has the potential to trigger a media hype: it must, of course, satisfy the general news values, but should also contain some violation of norms, be suitable for public debate and, finally, it must be possible for the media to cover the event from a variety of perspectives. Concerning the structure and dynamics of the media hype, the article concludes that media hypes begin with a trigger event, they last approximately three weeks and come in several, usually three, waves of decreasing intensity. ■
Article
A change in an organization's reputation has consequences and implications that may go beyond that organization's boundaries. Drawing on social network and stakeholder research, we introduce the construct of reputation spillover to examine the process in which a reputational crisis occurred to one organization may spillover to other organizations that are either proximate or structurally equivalent to the focal organization. We argue that this process occurs mainly through the perceptions and reactions of stakeholders and is contingent upon the network centrality of the focal organization, the network structure of the industry and the past reputation of potential recipient organizations.Corporate Reputation Review (2008) 11, 94–108. doi:10.1057/crr.2008.6
Article
Transparency concerns and the concomitant accountability challenges have motivated policy and legal scholars to explore information-based regulatory approaches. We examine their usefulness in the context of the nonprofit sector which tends to show signs of governance failure. Although nonprofits are required by law to disclose information on fund use, nonprofit donors face difficulties in accessing and interpreting information about how nonprofits are deploying resources. Charity watchdogs make this information available to donors in a convenient format. In theory, this should allow donors to reward nonprofits that devote resources to service delivery and to punish those that are less careful about controlling overheads. To test the relationship between charity ratings and donations, we examine 90 nonprofits in the state of Washington for the period 2004–2007. Drawing on ratings data provided by Charity Navigator, we find that changes in charity ratings tend not to affect donor support to these nonprofits. We explore this statistical finding via interviews with 10 charities located in Washington State. Supporting the statistical results, we find that charities believe that donors tend not to systematically embed ratings in their donation decisions. Instead, they believe that donors assess nonprofits’ effectiveness and trustworthiness via other means such as familiarity, word-of-mouth, or the visibility of the nonprofit in their community. In sum, the policy challenge is to provide information which users desire such as organizational effectiveness as opposed to basic fund allocation in the case of non-profits. What matters for policy efficacy is not how much information is provided but of what type.
Article
Obra que reconstruye el origen y evolución de las actuales redes transnacionales que, con la utilización de las nuevas tecnologías informativas como recurso organizador y aglutinador, han logrado constituirse en movimientos más o menos presionadores en la defensa de los derechos humanos, de la protección ambiental y de una mayor equidad de género, entre otros.
Article
The abstract for this document is available on CSA Illumina.To view the Abstract, click the Abstract button above the document title.
Article
The premise of this study is that a good reputation serves as an intangible asset which can help protect the organization in times of corporate crisis — in public-relations terms, the `reservoir of goodwill' presumption. Using data from the stock market crashes in 1987 and 1989, this study examined whether companies with better reputations, as measured by Fortune's annual ratings of America's largest corporations, suffered less severe declines in market value. Results show no significant difference between companies with higher and lower reputations in 1987, when the market dropped over 20 per cent in one day. During this crisis, there was a high volume of automated computer trading and a great deal of investor panic which may have precluded rational investment decision making. In 1989, however, when the market took a less severe sudden, unexpected downturn, the stock prices of companies with better reputations dropped significantly less than those of companies not favored with such positive standing. This supports the hypothesis that good corporate reputations provide a reservoir of goodwill which buffers companies from market decline in times of uncertainty and economic turmoil (short of a panic), underscoring the importance of attentive reputation management.Corporate Reputation Review (2000) 3, 21-29; doi:10.1057/palgrave.crr.1540096
Article
One hundred and sixty-one members of the general public were questioned about their perceptions of the images and reputations of major UK charities. It emerged that variation within the response data was best accounted for by a restricted model wherein specific aspects of charity `image', on the one hand, and charity `reputation' on the other, represented particular subdivisions of each construct. Thus, image and reputation were not seen as elements of the same single concept. The factors underlying charity image related to compassion, dynamism, idealism, focus on beneficiaries and being seen as `non-political'. Charity reputation, conversely, was largely determined by first the variables found in the Fortune corporate reputation index and, secondly, whether a charity was regarded as `well known' by respondents. It appeared that a charity's image and reputation exerted a strong influence on donor behavior.Corporate Reputation Review (2003) 6, 276-289; doi:10.1057/palgrave.crr.1540206
Article
We introduce a novel approach for automatically classify-ing the sentiment of Twitter messages. These messages are classified as either positive or negative with respect to a query term. This is useful for consumers who want to re-search the sentiment of products before purchase, or com-panies that want to monitor the public sentiment of their brands. There is no previous research on classifying sen-timent of messages on microblogging services like Twitter. We present the results of machine learning algorithms for classifying the sentiment of Twitter messages using distant supervision. Our training data consists of Twitter messages with emoticons, which are used as noisy labels. This type of training data is abundantly available and can be obtained through automated means. We show that machine learn-ing algorithms (Naive Bayes, Maximum Entropy, and SVM) have accuracy above 80% when trained with emoticon data. This paper also describes the preprocessing steps needed in order to achieve high accuracy. The main contribution of this paper is the idea of using tweets with emoticons for distant supervised learning.
Article
Drawing upon theory on social judgments and impression formation from social psychology, this paper explores the socio-cognitive processes that shape the formation of favorable and unfavorable organizational reputations. Specifically, we suggest that stakeholders make distinctions between an organization’s capabilities and its character. We explain the nature and function of each and articulate the manner in which judgment heuristics and biases manifest in the development of capability and character reputations. In doing so, this research explores both the positive and negative sides of organizational reputation by examining the manner in which different types of reputations are built or damaged, and how these processes influence the ability of managers to enhance and protect these reputations.
Article
In this article we examine how information problems can cause agency slippages and lead to governance failures in nonprofit organizations. Drawing on the principal–agent literature, we provide a theoretical account of an institutional mechanism, namely, voluntary regulation programs, to mitigate such slippages. These programs seek to impose obligations on their participants regarding internal governance and use of resources. By joining these programs, nonprofit organizations seek to differentiate themselves from nonparticipants and signal to their principals that they are deploying resources as per the organizational mandate. If principals are assured that agency slippages are lower in program participants, they might be more likely to provide the participants with resources to deliver goods and services to their target populations. However, regulatory programs for nonprofit organizations are of variable quality and, in some cases, could be designed to obscure rather than reveal information. We outline an analytical framework to differentiate the credible clubs from the “charity washes.” A focus on the institutional architecture of these programs can help to predict their efficacy in reducing agency problems.
Article
There are signs that a general ‘counter-attack’ is now being orchestrated against the ‘greens’. This paper surveys the evidence regarding an ‘issue-attention’ cycle in environmental concern in Western Europe and North America. It furthermore discusses the role of the news media in creating the cycle. It is well documented that the mass media plays an important role in determining which issues receive high or low attention by the general public. However, not only does the media's assessment of what is newsworthy mean that ‘green’ businesses will eventually lose the current of a rising issue attention cycle, but also its mere success means that stories framing ‘green’ businesses in a negative light become newsworthy while positive stories lose their newsworthiness. Therefore, and despite a large and loyal customer base, many ‘green’ companies now find themselves in a much more hostile environment than a decade ago. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.