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Article
Publication date: 26 July 2013

Zhe Qu, Youwei Wang, Shan Wang and Yanhui Zhang

Despite the growing popularity of internet based social media on e-commerce platforms, systematic examination of the emerging phenomenon is scarce. This paper aims to…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite the growing popularity of internet based social media on e-commerce platforms, systematic examination of the emerging phenomenon is scarce. This paper aims to study whether online retailers ' social activity on e-commerce platforms improves their business performance, and if it does, what are the underlying mechanisms.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper proposes a typology of online retailers ' social activities on e-commerce platforms. Then drawing on social capital theory and social network theory, the authors develop hypotheses that relate online retailers ' social activities to their business performance. The hypotheses are tested using a large dataset collected from an e-commerce platform in China.

Findings

The paper shows that: online retailers ' social activities for friend-making improve their business performance, regardless of the directional attribute of the activities; social activities for advice-seeking decrease online retailers ' business performance; and social activities for advice-giving increase online retailers ' business performance.

Research limitations/implications

The data in the empirical study are from an e-commerce platform in China, hence the research results may lack generalisability. Therefore, researchers are encouraged to test the proposed hypotheses further.

Practical implications

The paper includes implications for e-commerce market makers and online retailers operating on e-commerce platforms. The authors show that online retailers ' social activities on e-commerce platforms can be an important source of business value. However certain types of social activities may hurt online retailers ' business performance, implying the necessity of a thoughtful social activity strategy in online marketplaces.

Originality/value

This paper represents an early effort to study whether online retailers ' social activities on e-commerce platforms improve their business performance and the underlying mechanisms of the effect.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 47 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2002

Patrick Ring

The Financial Services Authority’s (FSA) Consultation Paper 121 suggesting depolarisation in the retail financial services sector has generated a great deal of debate. The…

Abstract

The Financial Services Authority’s (FSA) Consultation Paper 121 suggesting depolarisation in the retail financial services sector has generated a great deal of debate. The motivation for the reforms, primarily to improve the position of the consumer, cannot be disputed. Nevertheless, in attempting such a wide‐sweeping change, it is clear that the reforms could bring difficulties as well as improvements. This paper argues that, to the extent that the current polarisation regime is detrimental for the consumer, this can be addressed without dismantling the basic framework of the current advice system. It acknowledges that there is a need for greater consumer education in this area, and that more needs to be done to address the needs of lower‐income consumers. Nevertheless, it is argued that the advantages anticipated as a result of the more radical reforms in the Consultation Paper are likely to be accompanied by problems that could negate the overall benefit accruing to consumers.

Details

Journal of Financial Regulation and Compliance, vol. 10 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1358-1988

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Article
Publication date: 8 December 2020

Yaoyi Zhou and Ying Hua

The purpose of this paper is to study whether the use of a shared study space played a role in shaping graduate students’ social networks by exploring how the copresence…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study whether the use of a shared study space played a role in shaping graduate students’ social networks by exploring how the copresence in space was related to the structure of friendship and advice networks. The authors first proposed two concepts of spatial copresence: measured spatial-temporal copresence and perceived copresence. The authors then examined the role of copresence through a case study of a shared study space occupied by 27 graduate students in the same department.

Design/methodology/approach

Copresence relations were first constructed through a six-month room access history data set and self-reported data to examine whether measured spatial-temporal copresence was consistent with perceived copresence. Friendship and advice network relations were then analyzed with copresence, social media connections, class project collaboration relations and social homophily (nationality, gender, cohort) through quadratic assignment procedure (QAP) and MQAP analysis.

Findings

The authors found that students who used the shared study space more often reported more friendship and advice ties. The perceived copresence and the measured spatial-temporal copresence were highly correlated. Copresence relations, as measured by survey and room access history, were both significantly correlated with advice relation, which was associated with perceived social support.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the debate about whether “space” continues to play significant roles in graduate students’ social networks in the context of flexible learning environments. The results also reveal new directions for research methods in studying spatial proximity in flexible settings.

Details

Journal of Facilities Management , vol. 19 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1472-5967

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Article
Publication date: 7 December 2015

Luljeta Hajderllari

The purpose of this paper is to investigate “embeddedness” of business relationships within social relationships of Danish farmer investors (DFI) concerning agricultural…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate “embeddedness” of business relationships within social relationships of Danish farmer investors (DFI) concerning agricultural investment and expansion abroad.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a survey of 61 DFIs operating abroad, information is elicited regarding their organisational network connections in terms of business and social relationships to other DFIs also operating abroad.

Findings

Results indicate that cooperation and received and given advice are positively related to social ties, whereas competition is negatively related, thereby supporting the idea that business relationships are embedded in social relationships. This implies that actors may behave less cooperatively in new institutions where they compete for scarce resources.

Originality/value

This paper assesses what happens when farmers change from the stable Danish environment to a foreign one. Will they be still cooperating with each other or they will adjust to the new institutions?

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 42 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 19 August 2021

Kristin L. Cullen-Lester, Caitlin M. Porter, Hayley M. Trainer, Pol Solanelles and Dorothy R. Carter

The field of Human Resource Management (HRM) has long recognized the importance of interpersonal influence for employee and organizational effectiveness. HRM research and…

Abstract

The field of Human Resource Management (HRM) has long recognized the importance of interpersonal influence for employee and organizational effectiveness. HRM research and practice have focused primarily on individuals’ characteristics and behaviors as a means to understand “who” is influential in organizations, with substantially less attention paid to social networks. To reinvigorate a focus on network structures to explain interpersonal influence, the authors present a comprehensive account of how network structures enable and constrain influence within organizations. The authors begin by describing how power and status, two key determinants of individual influence in organizations, operate through different mechanisms, and delineate a range of network positions that yield power, reflect status, and/or capture realized influence. Then, the authors extend initial structural views of influence beyond the positions of individuals to consider how network structures within and between groups – capturing group social capital and/or shared leadership – enable and constrain groups’ ability to influence group members, other groups, and the broader organizational system. The authors also discuss how HRM may leverage these insights to facilitate interpersonal influence in ways that support individual, group, and organizational effectiveness.

Details

Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80117-430-5

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Article
Publication date: 24 June 2021

Sharath Sasidharan

Knowledge acquired by employees from co-workers through social networks may serve to reduce technostress during the use of a new and complex information system. The role…

Abstract

Purpose

Knowledge acquired by employees from co-workers through social networks may serve to reduce technostress during the use of a new and complex information system. The role of gender-based employee preferences in forming and acquiring system-related knowledge through friendship, advice, and expertise networks, and the impact of network-embedded expertise on performance outcomes are explored.

Design/methodology/approach

The research hypotheses were empirically tested through survey data collected from employees of a large organization that had implemented an enterprise system.

Findings

The advice networks of female employees were an extension of their friendship networks, whereas that of male employees were configured to include co-workers with system-related expertise. Exposure to high quality knowledge flows resulted in lowered technostress levels among male employees compared to their female counterparts. However, there was only a marginal difference in performance outcomes. The “expertise-deficit” in the advice network of female employees was apparently compensated through their dependence on the helpdesk.

Originality/value

Research on system-related knowledge support through social networks has focused on the structural features of interaction ties with little or no emphasis on networking employees and their individual preferences. Moving away from this structural orientation, this study validates the contention that gender-driven motivations impact employee networking preferences, determine network-embedded expertise levels, and influence employee technostress. This study can help configure implementation environments that maximize network acquisition of high-quality knowledge, reduce technostress, and enhance performance outcomes.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

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Article
Publication date: 2 July 2021

Meghan Comstock, Jonathan Supovitz and Maya Kaul

This study examines the relational dynamics between teachers and formal teacher leaders (TLs). We examine the association between relationship structure and leader-member…

Abstract

Purpose

This study examines the relational dynamics between teachers and formal teacher leaders (TLs). We examine the association between relationship structure and leader-member exchange (LMX) quality and the extent to which LMX mediates the relationship between social network (SN) measures of dyadic relationships and TL influence.

Design/methodology/approach

Using survey data from 1,895 teacher-TL relationships, we employ path mediation analysis using hierarchical linear modeling.

Findings

Our results indicate that voluntary advice-seeking and multiplex ties are associated with stronger exchange quality between teachers and TLs. In addition, LMX partially mediates the relationship between voluntary ties and TL influence.

Originality/value

SN and LMX theories offer two complementary lenses for studying relational dynamics in organizations, though they seldom are used together, especially in education. This study bridges SN and LMX theories and measures to bolster studies of relational dynamics in organizations and highlights that in the case of formal teacher leadership, there is a need for school structures that enable teachers and TLs to seek out one another informally and develop strong social exchanges.

Details

Journal of Professional Capital and Community, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-9548

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Article
Publication date: 18 June 2018

Yi-Hwa Liou and Alan J. Daly

Secondary school leadership provides multiple challenges in terms of the diversity of tasks, multiple demands on time, balancing communities and attending to instructional…

Abstract

Purpose

Secondary school leadership provides multiple challenges in terms of the diversity of tasks, multiple demands on time, balancing communities and attending to instructional programming. An emerging scholarship suggests the importance of a distributed instructional leadership approach to high school leadership. However, what has been less thoroughly explored is how secondary school leadership is distributed leaders across a school district. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the social structure and positions urban high school principals occupy in the district system.

Design/methodology/approach

This study was conducted in one urban fringe public school district in southern California serving diverse students populations. The data were collected at three time points starting in Fall 2012 and ending in Fall 2014 from a district-wide leadership team including all central office and site leaders. All leaders were asked to assess their social relations and perception of innovative climate. The data were analyzed through a series of social network indices to examine the structure and positions of high school principals.

Findings

Results indicate that over time high school principals have decreasing access to social capital and are typically occupying peripheral positions in the social network. The high school principals’ perception of innovative climate across the district decreases over time.

Originality/value

This longitudinal study, one of the first to examine high school principals from a network perspective, sheds new light on the social infrastructure of urban high school principals and what this might mean for efforts at improvement.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 56 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Book part
Publication date: 21 March 2003

Priti Pradhan Shah and Kurt T Dirks

Social networks provide the architecture to facilitate important socio-emotional and task related exchanges within groups. However, researchers have just begun to explore…

Abstract

Social networks provide the architecture to facilitate important socio-emotional and task related exchanges within groups. However, researchers have just begun to explore how relationships form in groups comprised of individuals who differ on one or more dimensions. This paper investigates the role of social categorization and social network theories on the formation of social networks within diverse groups. We suggest that each perspective offers an alternative, but incomplete, understanding of how relationships may arise in diverse groups. Specifically, we integrate these two perspectives to provide a more complete understanding of how different types of diversity impact tie formation and allow individuals in diverse groups to achieve their socio-emotional and task-related objectives.

Details

Identity Issues in Groups
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-168-2

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Article
Publication date: 15 February 2016

Kristine Kuhn, Tera Galloway and Maureen Collins-Williams

The purpose of this paper is to examine small business owners’ informal advice-seeking from peers, with a focus on the opportunities afforded by the internet for owners to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine small business owners’ informal advice-seeking from peers, with a focus on the opportunities afforded by the internet for owners to acquire assistance from other owner-managers outside their local community.

Design/methodology/approach

Over 600 owner-managers in a rural US state were surveyed about their advice-seeking during the previous year from peers in the same community, from non-local peers they had met in person, and from peers known only online. Mixed effects logistic regression analysis was used to test both main effects of business and owner characteristics on advice-seeking and interactions with type/location of peer advisors.

Findings

Most owners had received advice from peers, and one-third had received advice online from a peer whom they had never met in person. Business performance was not associated with overall use of peer advice, but did interact significantly with source; the use of online-only advisors was associated with business growth, suggesting the possible benefit of weak ties. Over two-thirds of respondents reported having used social media and/or online forums to access advice or support from other owners (both those met in person and those not), with women and younger owners more likely to rely on such tools.

Originality/value

This study shows that entrepreneurial research needs to consider peer advisors beyond local networks as potential resources for small business owners. While previous research has examined entrepreneurs’ use of social media for marketing, this study shows its utility for accessing advice.

Details

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 23 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

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