Multidisciplinary preliminary study on reputational risks

Opportunities and threats for companies in the age of digital opinion making

The public interest in social and ecological responsibility of companies is growing. Violations of public expectations pose considerable reputational risks. The sustainability of business models and investments is subject to considerable strategic risks.

If a company's reputation is damaged, the confidence of various stakeholders in a positive future suffers. Possible consequences such as a reduction in customer loyalty or limited willingness to invest on the part of capital providers can hit companies hard and even threaten their very existence. The proactive management of reputational risks is therefore an essential entrepreneurial skill.

Against this background, the research project of the University of St. Gallen, funded by the Funk Stiftung, conducted a preliminary study with the aim of compiling and consolidating the state of the art in research on reputation, reputation risks and their management. For this purpose, a systematic literature analysis was conducted with a focus on the concept of reputation and its definition. 

The project serves as a basic study for the development of a dynamic impact model for the interaction of the factors from which a dynamically expandable measurement model is to be derived. Instead of a rigid CSR reporting framework, an interactive, dynamic "business game" will thus be developed, on the basis of which interactions and indicators for the user's particular business model can be determined. 


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The preliminary study on reputation risks at the University of St. Gallen was gladly initiated by the Funk Stiftung.