Jenny Fairbrass

University of East Anglia



I am currently employed in Norwich Business School (NBS) at the University of East Anglia (UEA), which I joined in 2013, as an Associate Professor in Business Management. I am currently the Head of the Responsible Business Regulation (RBR) group following more than four years serving as the NBS UG Programme Director. My current spell at the UEA follows a decade, more or less, in the School of Management at the University of Bradford where I was Head of Group for Strategy Economics and International Business and then the Doctoral Programme Director. That, in turn, was preceded by five years in the Centre for Social and Economic Research (CSERGE) as an RA and then SRA from 1999 to 2003, when I worked closely with Andy Jordan and Tim O Riordan. Prior to that, I trained and worked a Teacher in the FE/HE and Sixth Form sector. My first job on graduating in 1979 was as a Trainee Chartered Accountant with a London based firm (one of the ‘big eight’ at the time), then called Thornton Baker and now Grant Thornton.

In contrast to my professional and vocational qualifications, all of my academic qualifications are in political science, having gained my PhD in business lobbying behaviour at the University of Essex in 2002, under Jeremy Richardson, Albert Weale and Hugh Ward. From starting my PhD, my focus was on European Union public policy making, initially examining market regulation and de-regulation among British and French firms in response to the EU’s Single Market Programme. My focal point was the firms’ interest representation activities (lobbying behaviour). But, on joining the staff at CSERGE, my research extended initially to EU and British environmental policy and later developed to encompass sustainability, energy policy and climate change alongside work on corporate social responsibility (CSR). I now research EU and national policy in these areas with a particular focus on energy policy and especially renewable energy policy.

I have extensive research networks, both internal and to external to the UEA. My external networks have emerged out of the three University Association of Contemporary European Studies (UACES) funded research groupings that I have led/co-led (2006-08, 2009-12 and most latterly 2015-18). These networks have worked on topics such as EU environmental policy, energy policy, sustainability, governance and multi-level governance (MLG), and Europeanisation. These UACES-funded activities have been extremely useful in developing the internationally based networks that have fed directly into my research work and publications. They have brought together PhD students, early-career researchers, established academics and practitioners in about 10 different countries, both within and beyond Europe. Together we have produced a substantial body of work and contributed to numerous panels to the UACES Annual Conference (as well as other conferences such as ECPR). Along with Thomas Hoerber at ESSCA, I am currently the Joint Series Editor for the ‘Governance of Sustainability in Europe’ book series, published by Routledge.


Journal Articles

Herranz Surrallés, A, Fairbrass, J. and Solorio, I., (Guest Editors) (2019). ‘Authority and Contestation in the EU Energy Transition’. Journal of European Integration. (Special Issue).

Zueva-Owens, A and Fairbrass, J. (2019), ‘Politicising Government Engagement with Corporate Social Responsibility: “CSR” as an Empty Signifier, Journal of Business Ethics..DOI: 10.1007/s10551-019-04330-5

Fitch-Roy, O., Fairbrass, J. and Benson, D. (2019), ‘Ideas, coalitions and compromise: reinterpreting EU-ETS lobbying through discursive institutionalism’ Journal of European Public Policy. Pp 82-101. Published online in January 2019. DOI: 10.1080/13501763.2019.1567573

Beddewela, E., & Fairbrass, J. (2016). ‘Seeking Legitimacy through CSR: Institutional Pressures and Corporate Responses of Multinationals in Sri Lanka’. Journal of Business Ethics, Volume 136(3), pp 503-522.

Fukukawa, K., Spicer, D., Fairbrass, J. and Burrows, S-A. (2013), ‘Sustainable Change: Education for Sustainable Development in the Business School’. Journal of Corporate Citizenship, 49: 71-99

O’ Riordan, L. and Fairbrass, J. (2013). ‘Managing CSR Stakeholder Engagement: A New Conceptual Framework’, Journal of Business Ethics, Published on-line October 2013.

Fairbrass, J and Zueva-Owens, A. (2012) ‘Conceptualising Corporate Social Responsibility: ‘Relational governance’ assessed, augmented, and adapted’, Journal of Business Ethics, 105(3): 321-335

Fairbrass, J. (2011) ‘Exploring Corporate Social Responsibility Policy in the European Union: A Discursive Institutionalist Analysis’, Journal of Common Market Studies, 49(5), 949-970.

Smith, J., Haniffa, R. and Fairbrass, J. (2011) ‘A Conceptual Framework for Investigating ‘Capture’ In Corporate Sustainability Reporting Assurance’, Journal of Business Ethics. 99(3): 425-439.

O’ Riordan L and Fairbrass J (2008) ‘Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR): Models and Theories in Stakeholder Dialogue’, Journal of Business Ethics. 83(4):745-758.

Adger W M, Brown K, Fairbrass J, Jordan A, Paavola J, Rosendo S, and Seyfang G, (2003) ‘Governance for sustainability: towards a ‘thick’ analysis of environmental decision-making’, Environment and Planning A, 35:1095-1110

Fairbrass, J.  (2003) 'The Europeanization of business interest representation: UK and French firms compared', Comparative European Politics, 1(3): 313-334.

Fairbrass, J and Jordan, A.  (2001) ‘Making European Union Biodiversity Policy: National Barriers and European Opportunities’, Journal of European Public Policy. 8(4): 499-518

Fairbrass, J. and Jordan, A. (2001) ‘European Union Environmental Policy and the Role of the UK Government: Passive Observer or Strategic Manager’, Environmental Politics. 10(2): 1-21.

Jordan, A. and Fairbrass, J. (2001) ‘European Union Environmental Policy: After the Nice Summit’.  Environmental Politics, 10(4): 109-114.

Turner, R.K. and Fairbrass, J., (2001) ‘Sustainable development policy in the United Kingdom’, Milieu, 16(3): 107-123


For a complete list of my publications, please visit my UEA website at:

Contact information


Postal Address
Norwich Business School, University of East Anglia, Norwich, NR4 7TJ