The Value of Unregulated Business-NGO Interaction: A Deliberative Perspective

Dorothea Baur, Daniel Arenas

Research output: Indexed journal article Articlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


Political theories in general and deliberative democracy in particular have become quite popular in business ethics over the past few years. However, the model of deliberative democracy as generally referred to in business ethics is only appropriate for conceptualizing interaction between business and society which occurs within a context which is more or less institutionalized. The model cannot account for "unregulated" interaction between business and civil society. The authors argue that scholars need to resort to the so called "critical strand" of deliberative democracy if we want to conceptualize interaction that happens without the involvement of decision-making institutions as political action in a deliberative sense. Adopting this approach allows us to identify cases in which unregulated interaction between business and civil society is preferable over institutionalization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-186
Number of pages30
JournalBusiness and Society
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • NGO-business interaction
  • corporate social responsibility (CSR)
  • deliberative democracy
  • political role of the corporation
  • public sphere


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