Sample Critical Thinking Paper on Stakeholder Analysis in the United States in Relation to gun Control Issue

Stakeholder analysis is carried out to assess the effectiveness of policies that affect parties involved in an organization. The analysis helps in identifying the needs and concerns of the people affected through amendment of the existing regulations or creation of new ones. It is important for institutions to be aware of the factors that may affect the welfare of the stakeholders, and this improves their welfare. The public sector is one of the areas where stakeholder analysis is important. The government regulations and deregulations have the potential to impact the welfare of the stakeholders either positively or negatively. An effective stakeholder analysis can be used to build strong campaigns with the public being the major participants. This implies that and institution has the capacity to influence the public through effective stakeholder analysis. The analysis helps in solving issues where there is lack of full implementation of the available regulations.

The issue of gun control in the United States has affected many stakeholders either directly or indirectly. Through effective stakeholder analysis, it is possible to have the issue resolved thus satisfying the needs of all the affected stakeholders. It is not possible to solve public policy issues without defining it first and this is enhanced by the situation of stakeholder analysis. The analysis entails a process that is used to effectively define the issue in question, the persons affected by the issue and determining the extent to which the stakeholders are affected by the issue. The stakeholders have the power to help, support, or oppose the objectives of an institution. It is thus crucial to profile the shareholders according to the ones who affect the issue and those affected by the same. By defining the two groups, it is possible to understand the necessary actions to take in order to address the public policy issue.

The stakeholder analysis can be applied in solving the gun control issue in the United States by identifying the persons affected by the issue and those that affect it. There are parties that have power to influence the implementation of the necessary legislations suitable in solving the gun control issue, and there are others who have interest in the issue and can either oppose or support the issue.  Therefore, it is possible for the leaders in the public sector to identify the most appropriate ways to deal with the two groups for optimum results.

In carrying out the stakeholder’s analysis, the gun control issue is major policy issue area where the different stakeholders argue about whether individuals should be allowed to possess guns, and the extent to which the possession should be controlled. It is important to identify the major stakeholders in the international security area to identify the most suitable policies to formulate in solving the gun control problem. The persons or organizations that have taken a keen interest or a public position regarding the issue of gun control are identified as stakeholders because they have an interest in the security concerns.  One may not understand the stand of the stakeholders unless she/he obtains policy documents that show the perceptions of the parties towards the issue under investigation. The policy documents can be obtained from various sources, such as newspaper articles, interviews, and reports on the gun control issue. This paper will use newspaper articles on gun control from the New York Times and the Washington Post to identify the various stakeholders involved in the issue of national security in relation to gun control.

One of the stakeholders in the gun control issue is the government because it is responsible for enacting and implementing laws that regulate the violence related to illegal possession of guns. The rate of deaths caused by the mass shootings in the United States is higher than in other developed economies, indicating that the control of possession of guns is little or non-existent in the country.  In the past, gun-related violence was linked to the rise in demand of violent video games but the argument has proven to be wrong. This is because the demand for the video games in Japan is more than in the United States but the rate of gun-related deaths in the two countries is opposite. The gun control laws in Japan are very strict due to the government’s effort. The other stakeholder as identified by the Washington Post article is Rick Perry, a former governor of Texas who holds that the regulations on the gun control need to be loosened in the country. Perry’s stand is refuted by William Bratton, experienced chief of police, having worked in three major cities. In his opinion, there needs to be sanity in the gun control policies to reduce the number of violent incidents.  The article also identifies Justice Antonin Scalia as a major stakeholder in the issue for holding that the citizens have the right to own a gun. Antonin’s stand is opposed by Justice John P. Stevens who argues that allowing the citizens to own guns is an act of judicial activism.  The federal court system is the other stakeholders as the courts agree that the federal government has the power to control the sale of guns in the country.

The religious leaders are also important stakeholders in the issue of gun control according to the article in the New York Times. The religious leaders have tried persuading the president to control the purchase of the guns in order to reduce violence in the country.  The companies that manufacture guns are also major stakeholders in gun control issue. They can help control the guns by ensuring that they only sell their products to authorized users thus reducing the high incidents of gun-related violence.  James Comey, the director of the F.B.I., is also a major stakeholder in the issue as he supports the actions of the institution in allowing the sale of the guns.

To enhance the understanding of the stakeholder analysis, it is important to analyze the results of the analysis based on the power and interests of the stakeholders. The horizontal axis represents the number of stakeholders in the gun control issue while the vertical axis presents the ideas that the stakeholders present.  From the analysis, some of the stakeholders support the regulation of gun control while some are against the idea.  It is important to consider the plausibility and the importance of the ideas brought about by the stakeholders in their stand on the gun control issue. Some arguments are more plausible than others and have the impact of affecting the policy issue.

The argument of Justice Antonin is less plausible because it does not address the security threat emanating from gun related violence. However, it is important to the debate on gun control because it guarantees the people power to own guns. The stand of Justice John Stevens is both important and plausible because it influences the actions of the court on the gun control issue. The government’s stand to control the guns is also plausible and important, as it influences the regulation of the guns through limiting the sale of the same. Rick Perry, a former governor, has an important but less plausible argument on gun control. His argument does not address the security issue resulting from gun control issues, but the argument has an impact on the success of the existing gun control regulations.

The argument by William Bratton is moderately plausible and important as it addresses the issue of enhancing national security through strict regulations.  The federal courts have allowed the government to control the sale of guns, thus the position of the courts is important to the gun control issue. However, it is less important as it does not provide the reason for gun control. Religious leaders have the capacity to influence gun control by pushing the government to control the supply of guns in the country. This is a plausible stand but the stand of the leaders is not important because they may not be in a position to influence the actions of the government. The companies that manufacture guns have the potential to influence the supply of guns in the country thus their stand is both important and plausible. The stand of the F.B.I. director is not important though it is plausible to the gun control issues.


Brawley, D. K., Ill, O. M., & Mosbacher, J. (2015, July 17). Here’s a Way to Control Guns. New York Times [New York].

Freeman, R. E. (2010). Strategic management: A stakeholder approach. Cambridge University Press.

Zakaria, F. (2015, July 30). Change your gun laws, America. The Washington Post [Washington].