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The dynamics of network strategies and positions

Network Strategy

ISBN: 978-0-7623-1442-3, eISBN: 978-1-84950-531-4

Publication date: 25 July 2008


In this study, we seek to broaden the research focus in the strategic alliance literature from a firm's “partner strategy” to its “network strategy” by linking a firm's partnering choices to changes in its network position over time. Using data on all underwriting syndicates in Canada over nearly 40 years, we conceptualize and model the interplay between an investment bank's own and its partners’ syndicate participation. Our findings indicate that the lead banks, which have greater discretion in choosing syndicate partners than co-lead banks, are more likely to make partner selections that create bridging positions that provide access to timely and non-redundant information as well as opportunities to play a broker role across unconnected others. We also find, however, that lead banks’ bridging positions deteriorate when they form ties with other lead banks. Network-based competitive advantages are thus influenced by network opportunities and constraints as well as partner-specific concerns, suggesting that new insights into the dynamics of interfirm networks and competitive advantage of firms are possible within this broader view.


Rowley, T.J. and Baum, J.A.C. (2008), "The dynamics of network strategies and positions", Baum, J.A.C. and Rowley, T.J. (Ed.) Network Strategy (Advances in Strategic Management, Vol. 25), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 641-671.



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