Kull Participates in Corporate Political Activism Expert Panel

Thursday, March 30, 2017TOPICS: ResearchLeadership

Alexander Kull, assistant professor of marketing at the University of San Diego School of Business, is one of 40 professors worldwide who were selected as panelists for the Real Time Expert Poll on Corporate Political Activism.

This international panel regularly grades companies that take political stands, rating those companies’ management on their consistency, transparency and other dimensions. Panelists represent both liberal and conservative political leanings, and bring expertise on diverse topics such as corporate reputation, social impact, communications, politics and economics. 

“Responding to controversial political issues is becoming a common way for brands to sharpen their identities and strengthen their reputations, also thanks to the media attention that comes with it,” says Kull. “In fact, customers and other stakeholders increasingly expect brands to take political stances. Sometimes, though, brands underestimate the risks involved. As panelists, we critically observe how political actions of brands can affect their relationships with stakeholders and, in turn, the bottom line.”

The panel is administered by Drexel University’s Institute for Strategic Leadership in partnership with the American Marketing Association and is comprised of researchers from world-renowned universities in eight countries. In addition to USD, these universities include Columbia, Cornell, Georgetown, INSEAD, Oxford and Princeton, among others. The panel has weighed in with evaluations on the political actions of such brands as Apple, Goldman Sachs, Lyft or Uber. Coverage of the most recent poll includes a clip on CNBC.

Prior to his academic career, Kull worked for eight years in leading positions at a spin-off of the management consulting firm McKinsey and at the international advertising group BBDO in Germany. Kull’s research lies at the intersection of consumer behavior and marketing strategy—both theoretically and methodologically. A central stream of his research explores the implications of the democratization of power relations and value creation between brands and their stakeholders.


Amy Schmitz
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