The latest study of PortEconomics co-director Theo Notteboom, porteconomics member Francesco Parola, associate member Giovanni Satta and Lara Penco (University of Genoa)- published in International Journal of Logistics Research and Application- provides a conceptual framework for evaluating the communication strategies a (landlord) port authority relies on in the management of its relevant stakeholders and the adoption of disclosure to critical issues.
The theoretical arguments are supported by empirical evidences from the Port of Rotterdam (PoR), i.e. a major port which leverages on disclosure to successfully manage stakeholders and support the implementation of corporate strategy. The research questions are addressed using a content analysis on the annual reports (ARs) of PoR in the period 2000-2012.
The overall research design enables the investigation of PA disclosure as a tool for managing the evolving interests of stakeholders under a longitudinal perspective. The PoR case shows that the relative importance of topics reported in the ARs change over time, as a result of external pressures and internal key events. The outcomes demonstrate the growing attention of PoR on topics relevant to the broader community (e.g. environment, safety/security) after a period characterized by a prominent focus on financial and governance issues. Besides, key breakthrough forces stimulating the shifts in landlord communication strategies are identified and discussed.
Finally, by suggesting an indirect approach to evaluate how PA prioritizes its salient stakeholders, the study adds to extant port literature and brings methodological implications.
You may freely download authors’ version @PortEconomics.eu.