Online Workshop on Managing Social Evaluations in preparation for the JMS Special Issue10 February 2023
In preparation for the special issue on "Managing Social Evaluations in a Complex
and Evolving World" in the Journal of Management Studies, we are calling for the
submission of long abstracts (up to 1,000 words excluding references, figures, and
tables) for an online workshop on Friday 10th February 2023.
The objective is for participants to get feedback on their paper as they prepare it for
submission to the special issue.
Deadline for submission of the abstract of 1,000 words: 23rd January 2023
Notification of acceptance: 30th January 2023
The workshop will take place online on the 10th of February 2023. We will
accommodate the time of the workshop with respect to the location of the
Please submit your 1,000 words abstract to: www.shorturl.at/nxCUZ
If you have any questions, please contact JMS.email@example.com
CALL FOR PAPERS FOR A SPECIAL ISSUE
MANAGING SOCIAL EVALUATIONS IN A COMPLEX
AND EVOLVING WORLD
Submission deadline: 1 April 2023
Marco Clemente (ZHAW, Winterthur)
Gokhan Ertug (Singapore Management University, Singapore)
Michael Etter (King's College London, UK)
Scott Graffin (University of Georgia, US)
Anastasiya Zavyalova (Rice University, US)
Yuliya Snihur (TBS Education, France)
This special issue will provide a platform for scholars interested in studying social evaluations,
a research topic that has grown tremendously in recent years. Such research includes a range of
concepts – including status (Podolny, 1993; Ertug and Castellucci, 2013; Graffin et al., 2013),
reputation (Rindova and Martins, 2012; Ertug et al., 2016), legitimacy (Patriotta et al., 2011;
Suchman, 1995; Bitektine, 2011; Suddaby et al., 2017, Tost, 2011), organizational misconduct
(Greve et al., 2010; Palmer, 2012), scandals (Clemente and Gabbioneta, 2017, Piazza and
Jourdan, 2018; Clemente et al., 2016;), stigma (Vergne, 2012), celebrity (Rindova et al., 2006;
Wade et al., 2006) and infamy (Zavyalova et al. 2017), as well as studies that look at social
evaluators, such as news media (Clemente and Gabbioneta, 2017), critics (Kovács et al., 2013),
rating agencies (Espeland & Sauder, 2007), and, increasingly, individual evaluators empowered
through digital media (Etter et al., 2019).
Although the literature on social evaluations has burgeoned in the last three decades, it
stays fragmented (Pollock et al., 2019). Several issues have emerged, including construct
proliferation (Bitektine, 2011; Deephouse and Carter, 2005, Devers et al., 2009), an increasing
range of theoretical approaches, multilevel perspectives (Bitektine and Haack, 2015), as well
as methodological (Snelson, 2016, Roulet et al., 2017; Bitektine et al., 2020) and empirical
challenges (Hannigan et al., 2019). It has become clear that different social evaluation
constructs overlap with each other and that there are common challenges and opportunities for
future work (Pollock et al., 2019).
This special issue is timely, given the increasing complexity and dynamism of the
environment where organizations operate. Organizational and strategy research has long
studied industries characterized by a high velocity (Eisenhardt, 1989) and hyper-competition
(D'Aveni, 2010). So, while such an environment is not new, what used to be an exception has
often become the norm. Terms like VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous)
environment and strategic agility have become common expressions in the business world
across industries (Bennett and Lemoine, 2014; Wang et al., 2021). Furthermore, the
digitalization of information, rise of social media, and stakeholder pressure on companies to
address grand challenges (e.g., climate change, economic and social inequality) have made
managing social expectations increasingly difficult and important for both established firms
and new ventures. Such a context raises many questions for social evaluation research,
especially about the fragility and stability of social evaluations and what organizations can do
to influence or respond to social expectations.
We envision a special issue to help unify social evaluation scholars by providing a
platform to discuss common challenges and explore cross-fertilization of theories and
methodologies. We are particularly interested in investigating questions that are related to
managing social evaluations in an increasingly complex and evolving environment within and
across levels (e.g., Bitektine and Haack, 2015; Ravasi et al., 2018). In this way, we aim to
appeal to a wide audience of social evaluation scholars and also engage with the challenges of
today's world. While the research area on social evaluations has grown steadily in the last few
years, there remain limitations in the literature and a significant set of open questions, which
keeps getting replenished by the contemporary relevance of this topic (i.e., the need for us to
understand, theorize about, and explain what is happening in our world today).
One of the shortcomings of the literature on social evaluations is that scholars often
focus on different constructs within their own streams of work, which remain distinct and
separate from each other. This masks the fact that some of the challenges in the literature are
common to multiple sub-streams of research within social evaluations, including a shortage of
multilevel views, outdated methodologies for assessing social evaluations, and an
underemphasis on the evolving nature of social evaluations in the era of digital media. Indeed,
in recent years, firms have been increasingly held accountable for not only their financial
performance but also their ESG performance. Thus, in addition to the increasing pace of
information disclosure, the metrics by which firms and executives are being evaluated are also
evolving. Relatedly, new ventures can now access much larger audiences of social evaluators
through digital media, creating opportunities for the rapid spread of new ideas and business
models (Seidel et al., 2020), but also risking overly optimistic expectations and evaluations for
such newly minted celebrities. Having a debate that can bring about the cross-fertilization of
ideas across different constructs will be helpful to researchers in the area and enhance the
practical relevance of the insights that come from such research.
We invite both theoretical and empirical contributions to this SI. Following is a non-exhaustive
list of potential question areas. We are interested in addressing these questions both for
established firms and new ventures.
Common challenges in social evaluations research:
1. What are the opportunities to incorporate multilevel theorizing and analysis into
research on the increasingly dynamic and complex nature of social evaluations
(Bitektine and Haack, 2015; Ravasi et al., 2018)?
2. Given the increasing polarization within and across stakeholder groups, what are the
dark (or negative) sides of positive social evaluations for new and established firms –
such as celebrity and reputation (Zavyalova et al., 2016) – and the potential
advantages/benefits of negative social evaluations – such as infamy and stigma?
3. Social evaluations have been typically theorized as related to one specific audience
(Roulet, 2019) and unidimensional (Roulet and Clemente, 2018). What are the
implications when considering multiple audiences and multiple dimensions (Fini et al.,
2018; Ertug et al., 2016)? Do multiple audiences differentially respond to the same
information? And what are the implications of considering multiple dimensions of
social evaluations (Bitektine, 2011; Bundy et al., 2021)?
Managing social evaluations in a complex and evolving world:
4. What is the connection between social evaluations and temporality (Ravasi et al., 2018)?
To what extent do social evaluations remain stable or become fragile over time? What
can influence stability and fluidity, and what are their consequences? How can
organizations create, maintain, or change their social evaluations within an evolving and
complex environment with discursive techniques including framing, narratives, or
storytelling (Rhee & Fiss, 2014; Snihur et al., 2021; Vaara et al., 2016)?
5. Many pivotal studies on social evaluations were developed in the pre-social media era.
What are the implications of social evaluations in a world of increasing consumption of
social media and digital media more generally (Castello et al., 2016; Etter et al., 2019)?
6. Organizations are increasingly expected to take a stand on social issues (e.g., climate
change, social movements, discrimination, inequality) (Hambrick & Wowack, 2021).
How do social evaluations of such organizations change based on whether and how they
take a stand? And how can organizations manage scandals and diverging social
judgments around contested social issues?
7. Previous research has typically looked at one main social evaluator in a field or
combined evaluations of multiple social evaluators into one construct. How and why do
multiple evaluators interact (e.g., Illia et al., 2021)? Why is there heterogeneity among
evaluations of multiple evaluators? How do observers make sense of the potential
variance across evaluators?
8. Social evaluators, such as news media and ranking agencies, not only evaluate
organizations but are also being evaluated themselves by internal and external
stakeholders. How do stakeholders evaluate the credibility of social evaluators, and
what are the consequences? How do social evaluators react to being evaluated? How do
observers make sense of potential divergent evaluations?
9. Are current data, operationalizations, and methodologies used to study social
evaluations up to the task of capturing the way these evaluations happen and affect
organizations? How can new methods, such as machine learning, automated sentiment
analysis (Etter et al., 2018), and topic modeling (Hannigan et al., 2019), be applied to
the contemporary study of social evaluations?SUBMISSION PROCESS AND DEADLINES
• The deadline for submissions is 1 April 2023.
• Submissions should be prepared using the JMS Manuscript Preparation Guidelines
• Manuscripts should be submitted using the JMS ScholarOne system
• Papers will be reviewed according to the JMS double-blind review process
• We welcome informal inquiries relating to the Special Issue, proposed topics, and
potential fit with the Special Issue objectives. Please direct any questions on the
Special Issue to the Guest Editors.
o Marco Clemente: firstname.lastname@example.org
o Gokhan Ertug, email@example.com
o Michael Etter, firstname.lastname@example.org
o Scott Graffin, email@example.com
o Anastasiya Zavyalova, firstname.lastname@example.org
• Publication is expected in mid-2025.
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Bitektine, A. (2011). 'Toward a theory of social judgments of organizations: The case of
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Journal of Management Studies