The Legitimacy of CEO Pay: The Discourse of Telecom, the Media and the Public

Type of content
Discussion / Working Papers
Publisher's DOI/URI
Thesis discipline
Degree name
University of Canterbury. Department of Accounting and Information Systems
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Tan, V.
Crombie, N.A.

This paper investigates how Telecom Corporation of New Zealand Ltd (Telecom) managed its legitimacy after announcing the Chief Executive Officer’s (CEO’s) pay in 2009 as well as the media’s and public’s reaction to Telecom’s announcement. The findings show that Telecom, the media and the public use the same remuneration logics to justify their positions. These remuneration logics are used to both justify and criticise Telecom’s CEO’s pay, although the media’s and public’s arguments are often unsophisticated and focus on the absolute level of CEO pay. Telecom is able to maintain its legitimacy through the use of well-structured, sophisticated arguments.

Tan, V., Crombie, N.A. (2011) The Legitimacy of CEO Pay: The Discourse of Telecom, the Media and the Public. 51pp.
executive remuneration, legitimacy theory, content analysis
Ngā upoko tukutuku/Māori subject headings
ANZSRC fields of research
Field of Research::15 - Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services::1503 - Business and Management::150303 - Corporate Governance and Stakeholder Engagement
Field of Research::14 - Economics::1402 - Applied Economics::140211 - Labour Economics