Mind the Gap: Royal Dutch Shell’s Sustainability Agenda in Nigeria

Case Abstract

Royal Dutch Shell has started to assume social and political responsibilities that go beyond legal requirements and fill the regulatory vacuum in global governance and a public responsibility gap in Nigeria. Which implications does this engagement have for the firm, governance and democracy? And which public responsibility strategies can a multinational company (MNC) like Shell employ in a complex operating environment such as Nigeria to be sustainable?

This case explores the implications of Shell’s politicized role in a context where a regulatory governance framework is missing at the local and the global level. Additionally, the case discusses different public responsibility strategies that MNCs such as Shell can employ in a complex operating environment such as Nigeria. This case study is interesting as it fleshes out what constitutes Shell’s role under the conditions of globalization and a local public responsibility gap and what are the consequences of the company’s engagement in global governance and self-regulation. It also creates an understanding of the challenges which organizations in controversial industry sectors face in a context of increasing demands for sustainability.

Authors: Esther Hennchen, Josep Maria Lozano
Institution: ESADE Business School, Spain
Competition Year2012
Place1st place
TrackCorporate Sustainability
Key WordsCorporate Social Responsibility, Political Role of MNCs, Public Responsibility Strategies, Corporate Legitimacy, Democratic Control of Corporations, Developing Countries, Globalization, Sustainability
CoursesStrategic Management, International Management, Legal Ethics, Business and Society
Target AudienceMBA, Graduate Students
Permission RightsAn inspection copy of this case is available here. Please contact Esther Hennchen and Josep Maria Lozano for permission rights.
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oikos International

posted June 30, 2012

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