Breakfast Seminar: That's not a campaign, that is greenwashing!

Exploring backlash against CSR communication campaigns.

  • Starts:08:30, 23 April 2024
  • Ends:10:00, 23 April 2024
  • Location:BI - campus Oslo, B2-080
  • Enrolment deadline:16.04.2024 00:00

Company campaigns are increasingly suspected of different forms of “washing”, ranging from greenwashing to warwashing and femwashing.

What can we learn from the contested “Fly Responsibly” Campaign of KLM that ended up in a lawsuit and public withdrawal of the campaign online?

Based on recent research it is evident that both the company and the activists used different persuasion tactics in their communication. But where did misinformation occur, and by whom?

This talk summarizes the events, lessons learned, tactics used and discusses how to best prepare for the washing-claims coming from stakeholders in the complex digital environment of today.


Vilma Luoma-aho

Vilma Luoma-aho (PhD) is Professor of Corporate Communication and Vice Dean at Jyväskylä University, School of Business and Economics. Her work is focuses on strategic communication of organizations in today’s dynamic environment that is increasingly prone to different forms of influence. With many diverse stakeholder groups posing new pressures on organizations, intangible assets (trust, reputation, social capital) play a stabilizing role: only trusted organizations are able to function well also in the future. Vilma’s research on positive faith-holders and negative hateholders has recently been complemented by research on fakeholders and sometimes even unethical forms of influence. Organizations that understand these diverse stakeholders are more sustainable. In fact, Antifragile Communication is based on the idea of stakeholder optimization: organizations should move from their own convenience to fulfilling the needs of their central stakeholders (e.g., customers, personnel, collaborators, decision makers). Vilma’s newest edited book, The Handbook on Digital Corporate Communication (Edward Elgar) is out in 2023.

Alina Arti

Alina Arti is a Doctoral Researcher at the Jyväskylä University School of Business and Economics. Her main research interest is uncontrolled corporate communication. In particular, her research is centered around investigating various communication “hijackings” by diverse stakeholder groups.