Understanding stakeholder influence: Lessons from a controversial megaproject
This study explores stakeholder influence in megaprojects by examining a controversial pulp mill project in Uruguay. The theoretical framework is based on stakeholder theory, focusing on stakeholder influence 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 how the stakeholder-firm and inter-stakeholder influences emerged and evolved during the megaproject. This research shows that stakeholder influences are interdependent and non-exclusive and that stakeholder influence evolves over time. The study examines both inter-stakeholder influence and stakeholder-firm influence, expanding the stakeholder-firm classification and 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. When companies better understand their stakeholders, managers can more easily identify the stakeholders’ needs and establish more fruitful collaborative relationships with them.
The study relates to the CICAT2025 project by focusing on stakeholder theory, and more concretely on stakeholder influence and relationships, as its theoretical background. The study shows how, as in the context of circular economy, stakeholders can influence and establish relationships not only to firms but also to other stakeholder groups. In CICAT2025, the article relates especially to the work package focusing on stakeholder interaction (WP6).
Authors: Lara Gonzalez-Porras, Tampere University, Anna Heikkinen, Tampere University, Johanna Kujala, Tampere University
International Journal of Human Resources Development and Management.
Potential beneficiaries of the results: Companies, especially those operating in the forest industry
Exploitation of the result: This research highlights the importance of understanding how stakeholders can be influenced by or, alternatively, exert influence in megaprojects. When companies better understand their stakeholders, managers can more easily identify and anticipate the stakeholders’ interests and thus establish more fruitful collaborative relationships with them.
Lara Gonzalez Porras