View Thread

Business and Society Review Call for Papers

  • 1.  Business and Society Review Call for Papers

    Posted 04-17-2020 10:15

    Business and Society Review addresses a wide range of ethical issues concerning the relationships between business, society, and the public good. Its contents are of vital concern to business people, academics, and others involved in the contemporary debate about the proper role of business in society. The journal publishes papers from all those working in this important area, including researchers and business professionals, members of the legal profession, government administrators and many others.


    Business and Society Review Special Issue

    Call for Papers

    Business and Society in the Age of COVID-19



    Guest Editors

    Nancy B. Kurland, Franklin & Marshall College,

    Melissa Baucus, Texas State University,

    Erica Steckler, University of Massachusetts Lowell,


    Deadline for submissions: December 1, 2020

    Anticipated publication:  September 2021



    As businesses respond to the shuttering of the global economy to fight the coronavirus, from the proverbial Main street to transnational companies, they are responding to the unprecedented economic conditions in multiple ways. Some industries are deemed essential and will thrive. Others are nonessential and result in the bolting of retail malls to scheduled abortions or the suspension of environmental rules. What role does corporate responsibility play in a shuttered economy?


    According to a well-cited typology of crises (Gundel, 2005), COVID-19 can be classified as an intractable crisis, one that can be anticipated sufficiently but for which interference is almost impossible due the system attributes. What makes covid-19 so intractable? And what does and will the interface of business and society look like in the age of COVID-19?


    In this special issue of Business and Society Review, we call for papers to examine the relationships among business, society, and the public good as a result of COVID-19.


    Articles can examine individual moral responsibility (who do we save? The 28 year-old who has a life ahead of her or the 58-year-old who has professional experience and institutional knowledge?; should folks with second homes not visit rural vacation homes for fear of infecting more rural, and less medically equipped communities?), organizational responsibility amid the shifting of resources from Main Street to online, from restaurants to grocery stores and through food banks (and the implications this has for agricultural supply chains, including for farm workers who become infected or are not able to enter the country, and global supply chains in general, Dolsak & Prakash, 2020; Crane, 2020), societal responsibility [major media sources granting free access to coronavirus-related news; national security threats (as military members become ill); threats to democracy, threats of civil unrest (as gun sales explode)], and systemic responsibility (what does our response to COVID-19 imply for response to other existential crises, namely climate change, Hoffman & Jennings, 2020; )? Articles can examine primary impacts as well as ripple effects (e.g., the loss of wages in third-world countries as first-world countries close retailers; the impact of lost funds as remittances decline; the rise in global domestic abuse as people stay home). Articles can examine how business models change to incorporate a socially responsible response in a post-COVID-19 environment. Will organizations experience posttraumatic stress (Williams & Williams, 2020)? We strongly encourage insight from outside of the U.S.


    Additional topics might include:

    • Wicked problems:
      • How do we understand the complexity of COVID-19 through organizational logics (Greenwood et al., 2010)?
      • What paradigm shits might we expect to see (Tanega, Taneja, & Gupta, 2011; Aguinis & Glavas, 2012)?
    • Crisis management:
      • What does COVID-19 tell us about crisis management (Bundy et al., 2017)?
      • How is COVID-19 a natural disaster crisis that was exacerbated by a failure of leadership (Mitroff, 2004)?
    • Ethical trade-offs:
      • What is the public good when public health butts up against public wealth? When people are unable to not work? Or forced to work without personal protective equipment?
      • Do companies layoff their employees? Or battle for a piece of the CARES Act for small business? What are the socially responsible trade-offs? Should a company not apply for funding if in doing so it takes away funds from other companies who might be more in need?
      • What is an essential business: gun stores? Abortion providers?
    • Implications for a wide range of stakeholders:
      • What has been the impact on people in healthcare: patients with COVID-19, patients without COVID-19 (whose care likely suffers as resources are directed elsewhere), healthcare workers who either work with COVID-19 patients or who fear that by working with non-COVID-19 patients they will contract COVID-19 or transmit it?
      • What are the implications for nonprofits, the arts, the role of the media?
      • Do different stakeholders hold unique responsibilities? What implications does COVID-19 have for the major theories in business and society, such as stakeholder theory?
    • Social enterprises, small business, family business:
      • How have social enterprises and self-defined socially responsible companies cared for their employees in light of COVID-19? Do employee-owned and/or B corps fare better (Kurland, 2018)? Or care more for their stakeholders?
      • What are the implications for entrepreneurship (rash of innovations in response to crisis? disruption of gig economy?), for family business (civic wealth creation, Lumpkin & Bacq, 2019? Community socio-emotional wealth, Kurland & McCaffrey, 2020? or supererogation and CSR, Tencati, Misandi, & Castaldo, 2020)?
    • Impression management:
      • How have industries/companies presented themselves in this crisis (see Walls & Walls, 2020)? And do these presentations contribute to coronawashing (Vilchez, 2020)?
    • Organizational Change: What are the implications for organizational change through disruption and adaptation?

    These questions are just examples. Authors should not feel constrained by them. We seek submissions across the business and society domain.


    Your manuscript can be submitted online via


    Prospective authors and potential reviewers are invited to email the guest editors with questions.




    Aguinis, H., & Glavas, A. (2012). What we know and don't know about corporate social responsibility: A review and research agenda. Journal of Management38(4), 932-968.

    Bundy, J., Pfarrer, M. D., Short, C. E., & Coombs, W. T. (2017). Crises and crisis management: Integration, interpretation, and research development. Journal of Management43(6), 1661-1692.

    Greenwood, R., Díaz, A. M., Li, S. X., & Lorente, J. C. (2010). The multiplicity of institutional logics and the heterogeneity of organizational responses. Organization Science21(2), 521-539.

    Gundel, S. (2005). Towards a new typology of crises. Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management13(3), 106-115.

    Kurland, N. (2018). ESOP plus Benefit Corporation: Ownership culture with benefit accountability. California Management Review60(4), 51-73.

    Kurland, N. B., & McCaffrey, S. J. (2020). Community Socioemotional Wealth: Preservation, Succession, and Farming in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Family Business Review, 0894486520910876.

    Lumpkin, G. T., & Bacq, S. (2019). Civic Wealth Creation: A New View of Stakeholder Engagement and Societal Impact. Academy of Management Perspectives33(4), 383-404.

    Mitroff, I. I. (2004). Crisis leadership: Planning for the unthinkable. John Wiley & Sons Inc.

    Taneja, S. S., Taneja, P. K., & Gupta, R. K. (2011). Researches in corporate social responsibility: A review of shifting focus, paradigms, and methodologies. Journal of Business Ethics101(3), 343-364.

    Tencati, A., Misani, N., & Castaldo, S. (2020). A qualified account of supererogation: toward a better conceptualization of Corporate Social Responsibility. Business Ethics Quarterly, 30:2, 250-272.

    Williams, S. D., & Williams, J. (2020). Posttraumatic stress in organizations: Types, antecedents, and consequences. Business and Society Review. DOI: 10.1111/basr.12192 




    Nancy Kurland
    Franklin & Marshall College
    Lancaster PA
    (717) 358-4734