Legitimacy in the Pluriverse: Towards an Expanded View on Corporate-Community Relations in the Global Forestry Industry

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Title: Legitimacy in the Pluriverse: Towards an Expanded View on Corporate-Community Relations in the Global Forestry Industry
Author: Ehrnström-Fuentes, Maria
Contributor: Svenska handelshögskolan, institutionen för marknadsföring, logistik och samhällsansvar
Hanken School of Economics, Department of Marketing, Supply Chain Management and Social Responsibility
Publisher: Svenska handelshögskolan
Date: 2016-09-26
Language: en
Belongs to series: Economics and Society – 304
ISBN: 978-952-232-319-4 (printed)
978-952-232-320-0 (PDF)
ISSN: 0424-7256 (printed)
2242-699X (PDF)
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/167082
Abstract: This thesis critically analyses corporate-community relations in the forestry industry, with a particular focus on cases in the Latin American context. The key conceptual focus is on the legitimacy of corporate activity from the perspective of local communities in the contested field of sustainability. The concept of legitimacy is critically discussed in the light of a pluriversal approach to reality: Instead of assuming that legitimacy can be derived from a universally socially constructed system of shared norms and believes, legitimacy in the pluriverse signals that the world is not made up of one single history or worldview but many different ways of knowing, sensing, and being; what is perceived as legitimate depends on the place-based social imaginaries of the communities where it emerges. This approach to legitimacy creation, provides a nuanced understanding of the contested nature of forestry-community relations in Latin America. Adapting a pluriversal perspective on legitimacy has consequences for governance and how the corporate world engages with local communities. Instead of promoting consensus-seeking stakeholder dialogues among those do not wish to become stakeholders of the corporate world, there is a need to open up for encounters between worlds through conversations across differences and celebrate conflicts as manifestations of the different worlds within the pluriverse. Rooted governance is introduced as a concept that contrasts with the top-down approach of global governance. Instead, the bottom-up rooted approach recognises local differences, knowledges, and livelihoods as important elements of reproducing and sustaining life in communities. This pluriversal way of conceptualizing and acknowledging different life worlds and social imaginaries opens up opportunities to explore new alternatives for co-existence of communities– one of the most urgent challenges for our and future generations.
Subject: extractive Industries
livelihood struggles
ontological differences
place-based social imaginaries

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