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Corporate Reputation: Fashion, Fad, or Phenomenon?

Naomi A. Gardberg ()
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Naomi A. Gardberg: Baruch College - City University of New York

Corporate Reputation Review, 2017, vol. 20, issue 3, 177-180

Abstract: Abstract In this paper I examined whether corporate reputation was a fad or fashion in organization science research. If corporate reputation was a fad, then we would see a sharp increase and subsequent sharp decrease in research. I performed a content analysis exploring the way in which authors described their work in leading management and business and society journals. I focused on four corporate associations (corporate celebrity, corporate identity, corporate image, and corporate reputation) to operationalize a fashion to which corporate reputation research may belong. Following prior research on fads and fashions on organization management research, I counted the incidence of these four constructs in article titles, abstracts and key words from 1997 through 2016. I observed a steady increase in the number of articles about corporate celebrity, corporate identity, corporate image, and corporate reputation over twenty years rejecting the old assertions that research about corporate reputation and related corporate associations was a fad. The number of articles on corporate reputation equaled the number of articles about the other three corporate associations. I found no evidence of a fashion; however, as more time passes scholars may find that research on corporate reputation and related constructs comprised a fashion. Surprisingly I observed that the number of articles on corporate reputation published in the two business and society journals was twice the number of articles published in the six general management journals. In conclusion, I find evidence that corporate reputation research has become a phenomenon especially in the business & society and ethics field.

Keywords: Corporate reputation; Corporate image; Corporate identity; Corporate associations; Fads; Fashions (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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