Dr Maha Rafi Atal

  • Lecturer in Global Economy (Politics)


I take a political economy approach to the study of corporate power. My current book project, examines “corporate social responsibility” as a system of Company Rule, tracing its history from colonial trading corporations to contemporary multinationals. I am also interested in how corporations exercise influence in the media and in politics, in the political power of internet platform companies, and in corporate accountability under international law.

In addition to my academic career, I am an award-winning business journalist, with work published in ForbesFortuneBusinessWeek, The Washington Post, The Guardian, and The New Statesman, among others. I am the co-founder and Executive Director of Public Business, a non-profit supporting reporting, research and discussion about the wider impact of business actions.

Prior to coming to Glasgow, I was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Copenhagen Business School, and earned degrees from the University of Cambridge, Brown University and Columbia University.

Research interests

I welcome opportunities to supervise research students in any of the following broad fields:

  • corporate power
  • corporate social responsibility
  • political economy of media
  • digital platforms
  • corporations and international law
  • global governance
  • international political economy


Co-Investigator, 2019-2021; Affiliated researcher, 2021-2022: "Commodifying Compassion: Implications of Turning People and Humanitarian Causes into Marketable Things." 5 million krone. Funded by Danish Council for Indepedent Research. https://www.commodifyingcompassion.com/



Corporate Social Responsibility in the Global Economy, Semester 2, 2022

Additional information

Personal Website: http://www.maha-rafi-atal.com/