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Boundaries of Business Actors and Networks – Theoretical and Methodological Reflections

No Business is an Island

ISBN: 978-1-78714-550-4, eISBN: 978-1-78714-549-8

Publication date: 17 August 2017


Boundary setting is identified as an important and highly useful factor, both in management practice and in dealing with phenomena in management research. It has significant implications for how circumstances and phenomena will be analysed and interpreted. Change – moving or change in nature – is a key factor in all attempts to strategise and economise. The authors argue that boundary setting is critical in analysing and interpreting business problems, both in the practice of management and in business research. The nature and function of boundaries vary. It can be exemplified with two archetypes of organisation – the integrated hierarchy and the connected company. In the first, the basic principle for boundary setting is buffering to protect the company from external variations. In the second type, it is bridging – connecting the company with specific changing factors. One important consequence is that when analysing and handling boundaries, both location and permeability become the central aspects to consider.



Munksgaard, K.B., Olsen, P.I. and Prenkert, F. (2017), "Boundaries of Business Actors and Networks – Theoretical and Methodological Reflections", Håkansson, H. and Snehota, I. (Ed.) No Business is an Island, Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 213-233.



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