Network Centrality and Homophily in Stakeholder Relationship Management: The Effects on a Social Enterprise’s Decision-Making Process

  •  Ornella Papaluca    
  •  Mario Tani    


Managing relationships with all the stakeholders is a central issue in Social Enterprises' management; these enterprises, operating across the faded boundary between for profit and not for profit sectors, overcome having limit scarce resources dotation trough relationships with other organizations in order to reach success in the society.

In our paper, we have studied the capability of this class of enterprises to create and sustain relationships on the basis of the concepts and principles of Stakeholder Theory, that according enterprises' survival capacity is linked to their manage ability those actors that affects or are affected by enterprise actions in their decision-making. Our empirical studies have focused on the social network, defined trough a snowballing process (degree = 3), insisting on a Social Cooperative in Naples with two world shops and one wholesale warehouse.

Each node in the Social Cooperative's egonetwork has been tested for two classical measures of Social Network Analysis (Wasserman & Faust, 1994; Scott, 1991): centrality and proximity. These tests have been later used to compare actors and to analyze if more central or more homophilous actors, those who share similar interests, are better able to influence the social cooperative.

Our paper highlights that homophily can better explain stakeholders' effects on the outcomes of strategic decision-making processes.

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