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Co-opetition, corporate responsibility and sustainability: why multi-dimensional constructs matter

Amit Kumar (Newcastle Business School, The University of Newcastle, Newcastle, Australia)
Julia Connell (Faculty of Business and Law, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, Australia)
Asit Bhattacharyya (Department of Accounting, School of Business and Law, CQ University, Melbourne, Australia)

Social Responsibility Journal

ISSN: 1747-1117

Article publication date: 25 November 2021

Issue publication date: 5 January 2023




This study aims to set out to develop and validate a new instrument to measure the multi-dimensional nature of co-opetition in corporate responsibility and sustainability (CRS). It is anticipated that this instrument will prove useful to firms wanting to adopt measures that support relevant sustainability strategies.


The scale development concerns three separate components, namely, item generation through expert interviews; a pilot study conducted for scale purification; and a final study for scale confirmation and validation, respectively. The final study comprises 215 firms across 11 sectors in Australia that engage in co-opetitive alliances for CRS activities.


This study empirically validates the distinctiveness of three dimensions (commonality-driven, competition-driven and collaboration-driven) of co-opetition in relation to CRS resulting in a 15-item multi-dimensional scale. The three dimensions were found to be important aspects both in terms of scale validity and organisational consideration.

Research limitations/implications

This study proposes a new research area regarding the proposed framework, as well as practical strategies for practitioners when considering co-opetition and their firm’s engagement in CRS activities.


Prior studies in similar areas have mainly comprised conceptual or qualitative approaches and do not tend to focus on all three aspects of co-opetition, corporate social responsibility and sustainability.



Kumar, A., Connell, J. and Bhattacharyya, A. (2023), "Co-opetition, corporate responsibility and sustainability: why multi-dimensional constructs matter", Social Responsibility Journal, Vol. 19 No. 1, pp. 114-137.



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