The aim of the paper is to define the role of trust and reliance in business relationships.
After this paper identifies gaps in the literature, a conceptual model is developed, and its implications analyzed and discussed.
One of the particularities of trust is its inherent anthropocentricity. As a concept, trust appears to be more applicable at the level of inter‐personal relationships than to inter‐organizational relationships. Business relationships involve both inter‐personal and inter‐organizational relationships. The paper considers a number of other possibilities and argues that there is a need to look at reliance as an incremental intellectual lens on business relationships.
Within a business‐to‐business marketing context, the paper discusses the impact of such a multi‐faceted conceptualization for research in business relationships.
Marketing researchers often neglect the fact that relationships between organizations are based on mutual interests, and attempt to stretch the concept of trust towards inter‐organizational relationships without the necessary theoretical scrutiny.
Applying the concept of trust to personal relationships and reliance to inter‐organizational relationships, the paper introduces a complementary, rational standard that contributes to the calculability in exchange relationships.
Mouzas, S., Henneberg, S. and Naudé, P. (2007), "Trust and reliance in business relationships", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 41 No. 9/10, pp. 1016-1032. https://doi.org/10.1108/03090560710773327Download as .RIS
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