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The Ethical Backlash of Corporate Branding


  • Guido Palazzo


  • Kunal Basu



Past decades have witnessed the growing success of branding as a corporate activity as well as a rise in anti-brand activism. While appearing to be contradictory, both trends have emerged from common sources – the transition from industrial to post-industrial society, and the advent of globalization – the examination of which might lead to a socially grounded understanding of why brand success in the future is likely to demand more than superior product performance, placing increasing demand on corporations with regard to a broader envelop of socially responsible behavior. Directions for strategic and managerial options are suggested. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2007

Suggested Citation

  • Guido Palazzo & Kunal Basu, 2007. "The Ethical Backlash of Corporate Branding," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 73(4), pages 333-346, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jbuset:v:73:y:2007:i:4:p:333-346
    DOI: 10.1007/s10551-006-9210-6

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Holt, Douglas B, 1997. " Poststructuralist Lifestyle Analysis: Conceptualizing the Social Patterning of Consumption in Postmodernity," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(4), pages 326-350, March.
    2. Fournier, Susan, 1998. " Consumers and Their Brands: Developing Relationship Theory in Consumer Research," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(4), pages 343-373, March.
    3. Keller, Kevin Lane, 2003. " Brand Synthesis: The Multidimensionality of Brand Knowledge," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 29(4), pages 595-600, March.
    4. Schouten, John W, 1991. " Selves in Transition: Symbolic Consumption in Personal Rites of Passage and Identity Reconstruction," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(4), pages 412-425, March.
    5. Belk, Russell W & Wallendorf, Melanie & Sherry, John F, Jr, 1989. " The Sacred and the Profane in Consumer Behavior: Theodicy on the Odyssey," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(1), pages 1-38, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. James Caccamo, 2009. "The Ethics of Branding in the Age of Ubiquitous Media: Insights from Catholic Social Teaching," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 90(3), pages 301-313, December.
    2. Maria Besiou & Mark Hunter & Luk Wassenhove, 2013. "A Web of Watchdogs: Stakeholder Media Networks and Agenda-Setting in Response to Corporate Initiatives," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 118(4), pages 709-729, December.
    3. Harald Biong & Arne Nygaard & Ragnhild Silkoset, 2010. "The Influence of Retail Management’s Use of Social Power on Corporate Ethical Values, Employee Commitment, and Performance," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 97(3), pages 341-363, December.
    4. N. Craig Smith & Guido Palazzo & C.B. Bhattacharya, 2015. "Upstream, downstream: toward a new morality of marketing in global supply chains," Chapters,in: Handbook on Ethics and Marketing, chapter 11, pages 220-237 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    5. repec:kap:jbuset:v:146:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s10551-017-3653-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Andrea Fosfuri & Marco S. Giarratana & Esther Roca, 2015. "Walking a slippery line: Investments in social values and product longevity," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(11), pages 1750-1760, November.


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