Social Network and Stakeholder Engagement, a developing match? A face to face between Italian and Chinese public universities

Author/s Elena Gori, Silvia Fissi, Michele Fiumanò
Publishing Year 2018 Issue 2018/1 Language Italian
Pages 22 P. 95-116 File size 241 KB
DOI 10.3280/MACO2018-001005
DOI is like a bar code for intellectual property: to have more infomation click here

Below, you can see the article first page

If you want to buy this article in PDF format, you can do it, following the instructions to buy download credits

Article preview

FrancoAngeli is member of Publishers International Linking Association, Inc (PILA), a not-for-profit association which run the CrossRef service enabling links to and from online scholarly content.

Interaction between Social Networks (SNs), blogs, websites, and other intenet-related technologies are mostly used to improve Stakeholder Engagement (SE). According to previous researches the universities use the new media tools, however in a traditional ways this underestimate their contribution in SE improving. The article, through exploratory research method, analyses the use of SN by Italian and Chinese public universities also by highlighting the SE’s process. Results reveal, for both countries, increasing attention to SE’s processes in decision-making systems. However, the study has shown how Italian universities achieve a more complete SE than Chinese universities, thus demonstrating greater awareness of the importance of their inclusion in their decision-making processes. Italian universities also manage SN more efficiently, both for news sharing and for data gathering useful to improving SE strategies. In conclusion, the study shows that, despite universities are fully awareness of the link between SN and SE, there is a strong need of improving within hoth countries.

Keywords: Public university, stakeholder engagement, social network, China, Italy.

  1. Adams C.A. (2013), Sustainability reporting and performance management in universities, Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, 4, 3, pp. 384-392.
  2. Aquilani B., Lovari A. (2009), Social networks and university communication: is Facebook a new opportunity? An Italian exploratory study, International Qmod and Toulon-Verona Conference on Quality and Service Sciences (Icqss), August 27-29, Verona, pp. 1-15.
  3. Aversano N., Manes Rossi F., Polcini Tartaglia P. (2017), I sistemi di misurazione delle performance nelle università, Management Control, 1, pp. 16-36. DOI: 10.3280/MACO2017-001002
  4. Ayuso S., Rodriguez M.A., Ricart J.A. (2006), Using stakeholder dialogue as a source for new ideas: a dynamic capability underlying sustainable innovation, Corporate Governance, 6, 4, pp. 475-490. DOI: 10.1108/14720700610689586
  5. Barnabè F., Giorgino M.C., Paternostro S. (2014), Il ruolo del Bilancio Sociale nelle Università pubbliche italiane: una riflessione sullo stato dell’arte, Azienda Pubblica, 27, 1, pp. 57-80.
  6. Barry J., Chandler J., Clark H. (2001), Between the ivory tower and the academic assembly line, Journal of Management Studies, 38, 1, pp. 87-101.
  7. Barwise P., Meehan S. (2010), The one thing you must get right when building a brand, Harvard Business Review, 88, 12, pp. 80-84.
  8. Bebbington J., Brown J., Frame B. (2007), Accounting technologies and sustainability assessment models, Ecological Economics, 61, 2/3, pp. 224-236.
  9. Belasen A.T. (2008), The theory and practice of corporate communication. A competing value perspective, Thousand Oaks, Sage.
  10. Bornmann L. (2013), What is societal impact of research and how can it be assessed? A literature survey, Journal of the American Society of Information Science and Technology, 64, 2, pp. 217-233.
  11. Caldarelli A., Allini A., Spanò R. (2014), Il bilancio sociale nelle Università tra compliance formale e disclosure sostanziale. Un’analisi empirica nel contesto italiano, Azienda Pubblica, 27, 3, pp. 243-259.
  12. Campogna S. (2012), Scientific research and “third University mission”: what role for University?, Italian Sociological Review, 2, 1, pp. 33-42.
  13. Cantele S., Martini M., Campedelli B. (2012), Gli atenei italiani e gli strumenti di pianificazione e controllo: a che punto siamo?, Management Control, 1, pp. 55-83. DOI: 10.3280/MACO2012-001004
  14. Capano G., Tognon G. (2008), La crisi del potere accademico in Italia, Bologna, Il Mulino.
  15. Carboni J.L., Maxwell S.P. (2015), Effective social media engagement for nonprofit: what matters?, Journal of Public and Nonprofit Affairs, 1, 1, pp. 18-28.
  16. Cassone A., Sacconi L., a cura di (2013), Autonomia e responsabilità sociale nell’Università. Governance e accountability, Milano, Giuffrè.
  17. Censis (2017), Quattordicesimo rapporto sulla comunicazione. I media e il nuovo immaginario collettivo, Milano, FrancoAngeli.
  18. Chatelain-Ponroy S., Morin-Delerm S. (2016), Adoption of sustainable development reporting by universities. An analysis of French first-time reporters, Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 29, 5, pp. 887-918.
  19. China Internet Network and Information Center (2014), Research report of the behaviours of social media users in China. -- Consultabile su:
  20. China Internet Network and Information Center (2015), The 35th report of the development of internet in China. -- Consultabile su:
  21. Chiu C., Lin D., Silverman A. (2012), China’s social media boom, McKinsey & Company. -- Consultabile su:
  22. Clark M., Fine M.B., Scheuer C.L. (2017), Relationship quality in higher education marketing: the role of social media engagement, Journal of Marketing for Higher Education, 27, 1, pp. 40-58.
  23. Coy D., Fisher M., Gordon T. (2001), Public accountability: a new paradigm for college and university annual reports, Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 12, 1, pp. 1-31.
  24. Dunfee T.W., Warren D.E. (2001), Is Guanxi ethical? A normative analysis of doing business in China, Journal of Business Ethics, 32, pp. 191-204.
  25. Esposito V., De Nito E., Pezzillo Iacono M., Silvestri L. (2013), Dealing with knowledge in the Italian public universities: the role of performance management systems, Journal of Intellectual Capital, 14, 3, pp. 431-450.
  26. Etzkowitz H., Webster A., Gebhardt C., Cantisano Terra B.R. (2000), The future of the university and the university of future: evolution of the ivory tower to entrepreneurial paradigm, Research Policy, 29, 2, pp. 313-330.
  27. Farneti F., Siboni B., del Sordo C. (2017), La misurazione della performance sociale nell’esperienza dell’Università di Bologna, Management Control, 1, pp. 137-166. DOI: 10.3280/MACO2017-001007
  28. Fissi S., Gori E., Romolini A. (2014), Un’indagine sulla qualità della rendicontazione sociale degli atenei italiani: quali prospettive per il futuro?, Economia Aziendale Online, 5, 2, pp. 111-120.
  29. Fonseca A., Macdonald A., Dandy E., Valenti P. (2011), The state of sustainability reporting at Canadian universities, International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 12, 1, pp. 22-40.
  30. Freeman R.E. (1984), Strategic management: a stakeholder approach, Boston, Pitman.
  31. Freeman R.E., Evan W. (1990), Corporate governance: a stakeholder interpretation, Journal of Behavioral Economics, 19, 4, pp. 337-359.
  32. Frey M. (2009), Il bilancio sociale delle Università, ImpresaProgetto, 1, pp. 1-14.
  33. Ghoshal S. (2005), Bad management theories are destroying good management practices, Academy of Management Learning & Education, 4, 1, pp. 75-91.
  34. Guibert L., Roloff J. (2017), Stakeholder dialogue: strategic tool or wasted words?, Journal of Business Strategy, 38, 5, pp. 3-11.
  35. Habisch A., Jonker J., Wegner M., Schmidpeter R. (eds.) (2005), Corporate social responsibility across Europe, Berlin, Springer.
  36. Hasan S. (2017a), Corporate social responsibility and the three sectors in Asia: contexts and perspectives, in Hasan S., ed., Corporate social responsibility and the three sectors in Asia. How conscious engagement on benefit civil society, New York, Springer, pp. 1-17.
  37. Hasan S. (ed.) (2017b), Corporate social responsibility and the three sectors in Asia. How conscious engagement on benefit civil society, New York, Springer.
  38. Hom W. (2002), Applying customer satisfaction theory to community college planning of student services. -- Consultabile su: _01.htm.
  39. Invernizzi E. (2000), La comunicazione organizzativa. Teorie, modelli e metodi, Milano, Giuffré.
  40. Kallio K.M., Kallio T.J., Tienari J., Hyvönen T. (2016), Ethos at stake: performance management and academic work in universities, Human Relations, 69, 3, pp. 685-709.
  41. Kaplan A.M., Haenlein M. (2010), Users of the world, unite! The challenges and opportunities of Social Media, Business Horizons, 53, 1, pp. 59-68.
  42. Kent M.L., Taylor M., White W. (2003), The relationship between web site design and organizational responsiveness to stakeholders, Public Relations Review, 29, 1, pp. 66-77.
  43. Kuah C.T., Wong K.Y. (2011), Efficiency assessment of universities through data envelopment analysis, Procedia Computer Science, 3, pp. 499-506.
  44. Lapsley I., Miller P. (2004), Transforming universities: the uncertain, erratic path, Financial Accountability & Management, 20, 2, pp. 103-106.
  45. Lovari A. (2014), Comunicazione universitaria. Evoluzione, sfide e nuovi modelli, Universitas, 134, dicembre, pp. 11-14.
  46. Lovari A., Mazzei A., Vibber K. (2015), University-student relations: dynamic framework in offline and digital environments, in Ki E.J., Kim J.N., Ledingham J., eds., Public relations as relations as relationship management. A relational approach to the study and practice of public relations, New York, Routledge.
  47. Lovejoy K., Waters R.D., Saxton G.D. (2012), Engaging stakeholders through Twitter: how non-profit organizations are getting more out of 140 characters or less, Public Relations Review, 38, 2, pp. 313-318.
  48. Lovett S., Simmons L.C., Kali R. (1999), Guanxi versus the market: ethics and efficiency, Journal of International Business Studies, 30, 2, pp. 231-247.
  49. Manetti G. (2011), The quality of stakeholder engagement in sustainability reporting: empirical evidence and critical points, Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management, 18, 2, pp. 110-122.
  50. Manetti G., Bellucci M. (2016), The use of social media for engaging stakeholders in sustainability reporting, Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 29, 6, pp. 985-1011.
  51. Ye Y., Xu P., Zhang M. (2017), Social media, public discourse and civic engagement in modern China, Telematics and Informatics, 34, pp. 705-714.
  52. Manetti G., Bellucci M., Bagnoli L. (2016), Stakeholder engagement and public information through social media: a study of Canadian and American Public Transportation Agencies, The American Review of Public Administration, pp. 1-29. DOI: 10.1177/0275074016649260
  53. Marino V., Lo Presti L. (2015), Strumenti di comunicazione e public engagement. Il caso delle università europee, Esperienze d’Impresa, 23, 1, pp. 63-77.
  54. Mazza C., Quattrone P., Riccaboni A., a cura di (2006), L’università in cambiamento tra mercato e tradizione, Bologna, Il Mulino.
  55. Mazzei A. (2004), Comunicazione e reputazione nelle università, Milano, FrancoAngeli.
  56. McAllister-Spooner S.M. (2010), Whose site is it anyway? Expectations of college website, Public Relations Journal, 4, 2, pp. 1-21.
  57. McWilliams A., Siegel D.S., Wright P.M. (2006), Corporate social responsibility: strategic implications, Journal of Management Studies, 43, 1, 1-18.
  58. Men L.R., Muralidharan S. (2017), Understanding social media peer communication and organization-public relationships: evidence from China and the United States, Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 94, 1, pp. 81-101.
  59. Mergel I., Bretschneider S.I. (2013), A three-stage adoption process for social media use in government, Public Administration Review, 73, 3, pp. 390-400.
  60. Mio C. (2013), Towards a Sustainable University. The Ca’ Foscari Experience, New York, Palgrave Macmillan.
  61. Mio C. (2016), La rendicontazione sociale negli atenei italiani. Valori, modelli, misurazioni, Milano, FrancoAngeli.
  62. Mion G., Melchiorri M. (2011), Il processo di redazione del bilancio sociale negli Atenei pubblici come fattore strategico per una comunicazione attendibile, Economia Aziendale Online, 1, pp. 117-129.
  63. Mitchell R.K., Agle B.R., Wood D.J. (1997), Toward a theory of stakeholder identification and salience: defining the principle of who and what really counts, The Academy of Management Review, 22, 4, pp. 853-886. DOI: 10.2307/259247
  64. Modell S. (2003), Goals versus institutions: the development of performance measurement in the Swedish university sector, Management Accounting Research, 14(4), pp. 333-359.
  65. Moggi S. (2016), Il sustainability reporting nelle università, Rimini, Maggioli.
  66. Mussari R., D’Alessio L., Sostero U. (2015), Il nuovo sistema contabile delle università, Azienda Pubblica, 28, 3, pp. 227-246.
  67. Neely A.D., Adams C. (2001), The performance prism perspective, Journal of Cost Management, 15, 1, pp. 7-15.
  68. Onyx J. (2008), University-community engagement: what does it mean?, International Journal of Community Research and Engagement, 1, 1, pp. 90-106.
  69. Oppici F., De Martino J.C., Morando F., Basso S., Futia G. (2014), #socialUniversity. Le università italiane sui social network, Nexa Working Paper, n. 2014-I, Torino, Nexa Center for Internet & Society.
  70. Orr S., Menzies J. (2012), Using social networks and the guanxi in case study research in Australian firms doing business in China, Australian Journal of Market & Social Research, 20, 1, pp. 22-33.
  71. Owen D.L., Swift T., Hunt K. (2001), Questioning the role of stakeholder engagement in social and ethical accounting auditing and reporting, Accounting Forum, 25, 3, pp. 264-282.
  72. Paletta A. (2006), Comunicazione agli stakeholder e pratiche contabili delle università, in Mazza C., Quattrone P., Riccaboni A., a cura di, L’università in cambiamento fra mercato e tradizione, Bologna, Il Mulino, pp. 249-286.
  73. Paolini L., Soverchia M. (2013), Le università statali italiane verso la contabilità economico-patrimoniale ed il controllo di gestione, Management Control, 3, pp. 77-98. DOI: 10.3280/MACO2013-003005
  74. Park H., Reber B.M. (2008), Relationship building and the use of web sites: how Fortune 500 corporations use their web sites to build relationships, Public Relations Review, 34, 4, pp. 409-411.
  75. Perrin A. (2015), Social media usage: 2005-2015. -- Consultabile su:
  76. Post J.E., Preston L.E., Sachs S. (2002), Redefining the corporation, Stanford, Stanford University Press.
  77. Ricci P. (2013), What future for social reporting and accountability in academic systems. An overview of the Italian case, Review of International Comparative Management, 14, 2, pp. 202-221.
  78. Romenti S. (2008), Corporate governance e reputazione: dallo stakeholder engagement allo stakeholder engagement, ImpresaProgetto, 2, pp. 1-23.
  79. Ruggiero V., Vagnoni E. (2007), “La trasparenza richiede valutazione”, in Vagnoni E., Periti E., Efficienti perché pubblici, Vol. 2, Roma, Carocci, pp. 91-121.
  80. Rybako S., Seltzer T. (2010), Dialogic communication in 140 characters or less: how Fortune 500 companies engage stakeholders using Twitter, Public Relations Review, 36, 4, pp. 336-341.
  81. Sciarelli S. (2007), Etica e responsabilità sociale nell’impresa, Torino, Giuffré.
  82. Serrat O. (2017), Knowledge solutions. Tools, methods, and approaches to drive organizational performance, Singapore, Springer.
  83. Shao P., Wang Y. (2017), How does social media change Chinese political culture? The formation of fragmentized public sphere, Telematics and Informatics, 34, pp. 694-704.
  84. Simms C., Chapleo C. (2010), Stakeholder analysis in higher education: a case study of the University of Portsmouth, Perspectives: Policy and Practice in Higher Education, 14, 1, pp. 12-20. DOI: 10.1080/13603100903458034
  85. Smedescu D.A. (2014), Using social media marketing in higher education, Romanian Journal of Marketing, 1, pp. 77-80. DOI: 10.1080/14703297.2012.760772
  86. Sousa C.A., de Nijs W.F., Hendriks P.H. (2010), Secrets of the beehive: performance management in university research organizations, Human Relations, 63, 9, pp. 1439-1460.
  87. ter Bogt H.J., Scapens R.W. (2012), Performance management in universities: effects of the transition to more quantitative measurement systems, European Accounting Review, 21, 3, pp. 451-497.
  88. Thompson P. (2004), University governance and the accountability of academic administrators, Journal of Academic Ethics, 2, 3, pp. 187-197.
  89. Unerman J., Bennett M. (2004), Increased stakeholder dialogue and the internet: towards greater corporate accountability or reinforcing capitalist hegemony?, Accounting Organizations and Society, 29, 7, pp. 685-707.
  90. Van Huijstee M., Glasbergen P. (2008), The practice of stakeholder dialogue between multinationals and NGOs, Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management, 15, 5, pp. 298-310.
  91. Will E.M., Callison C. (2006), Web presence of universities: is higher education sending the right message online?, Public Relations Review, 32, 2, pp.180-183.
  92. Ye J. (2017), Reflections on and practices of Peking University fulfilling social responsibility, in Shek D.T.L., Hollister R.M., eds., University social responsibility and quality life. A global survey of concepts and experiences, Singapore, Springer, pp. 205-221.
  93. Yin R.K. (1994), Application of case study research, London, Sage.

Elena Gori, Silvia Fissi, Michele Fiumanò, Social Network e Stakeholder Engagement, un binomio tutto da sviluppare? Un confronto tra le università pubbliche di Italia e Cina in "MANAGEMENT CONTROL" 1/2018, pp 95-116, DOI: 10.3280/MACO2018-001005