Understanding the Megaproject Social Responsibility Network among Stakeholders: A Reciprocal Exchange Perspective

Xian Zheng*, Jiaying Chen, Bo Xia, Martin Skitmore, Saixing Zeng

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Previous research has recognized that the successful realization of megaproject social responsibility (MSR) relies heavily on the cooperation of a variety of stakeholders. However, the process of stakeholders conducting MSR exchanges reciprocally to achieve MSR goals has not been fully revealed, hindering the consistent implementation of interorganizational and cooperative MSR. To bridge these gaps, based on social exchange theory (SET), stakeholder theory, and network theory, this study used the stakeholder value network (SVN) to unravel MSR exchanges with multiple types and their contribution to social value. Given that, we can identify the critical stakeholders, MSR exchanges, and types to facilitate achieving social responsibility goals in megaprojects. A qualitative MSR network was first developed based on seven stakeholders with 77 MSR flows involving four MSR types, which was further quantified through a survey of 216 managers involved in 133 megaprojects. The results demonstrate that when owners act as the focal organization, the government and the general contractors act as critical external and internal stakeholders to promote reciprocal exchanges in the MSR network. Eleven critical MSR exchanges (i.e., five restricted exchanges and six generalized exchanges) are identified to facilitate the reciprocal and joint implementation of MSR to obtain high megaproject social values. It is also suggested that stakeholders should pay particular attention to political MSR to guarantee a stable environment for reciprocal MSR exchanges among primary stakeholders. This research intends to guide the efforts of stakeholders to engage in effective MSR to satisfy their partners mutually, contributing to realizing high megaproject social value.

Original languageEnglish
Article number04023105
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Construction Engineering and Management - ASCE
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2023


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