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Knowledge sharing is a fundamental source of competitive advantage. Social networks are thought to play an important role in knowledge sharing, but are presumed to create…
Knowledge sharing is a fundamental source of competitive advantage. Social networks are thought to play an important role in knowledge sharing, but are presumed to create a trade-off such that a network can be optimized to promote either knowledge seeking or knowledge transfer, but not both. The trade-off, however, is premised on, and representative of a broader tendency to treat, brokerage and closure as contradictory network forms. We challenge this assertion and propose a theory of knowledge sharing with brokerage and closure as compatible and complementary. Evidence from a contract research and development firm broadly supports our theory. We also report the results of a simulation analysis, which illustrate that only in the extremely rare case when a network is characterized by nearly complete balance do brokerage and closure begin to create a trade-off.
I evaluate the accuracy with which respondents report egocentered network data. I find that 72% of the time ego’s assessment of the tie between a pair of alters…
I evaluate the accuracy with which respondents report egocentered network data. I find that 72% of the time ego’s assessment of the tie between a pair of alters corresponded with both alters’ report of the tie between themselves, and 87% of the time, ego’s report of the tie between a pair of alters is in agreement with at least one of the alters. I discuss the implications of the findings for the debate over the merits of egocentered network data.
I assess the extent that the egonet method of collecting data permits accurate inferences to the true structural features of the network. This inference problem has three…
I assess the extent that the egonet method of collecting data permits accurate inferences to the true structural features of the network. This inference problem has three critical components: local-global inference error, ego distortion, and feature inference error. Analysis of four data sets indicates that structural features can be predicted by estimates generated from egonets in some instances, but more often than not they are not good predictors.
Social scientists have recently turned their attention to the important consequences of industrial districts or so-called agglomeration economies on economic growth and…
Social scientists have recently turned their attention to the important consequences of industrial districts or so-called agglomeration economies on economic growth and firm performance. This paper explores an important but unanswered question involving agglomeration economies: does geographic location within an agglomeration affect firm performance? I assess this question by examining the effects of different geographic office locations (by zip code) on the failure rates of all corporate law firms located in Silicon Valley from 1969 to 1998. Empirical estimates reveal that Silicon Valley corporate law firms benefit from the increased volume of client referrals that comes from being near mutualistic firms that offer a different range of legal services, the lower labor costs and more specialized division of labor that come from being near a large joint supply of lawyers, and the increased business that comes from being near important clients (i.e. venture capital firms).
In addition, corporate law firms that locate in certain municipalities of Silicon Valley, including Palo Alto, San Jose, and Santa Clara, have significantly increased failure rates, even controlling for many firm-specific differences. Younger corporate law firms (under the age of 11 years) are helped disproportionately by being near important environmental resources and harmed disproportionately by being in certain perilous areas of Silicon Valley. All told, a law firm’s office location within Silicon Valley has significant consequences for its survival.
The purpose of this paper is to examine how firms use the identities of their alliance partners in choosing initial governance structures in strategic alliances. It…
The purpose of this paper is to examine how firms use the identities of their alliance partners in choosing initial governance structures in strategic alliances. It proposes that social identity from the perspective of an established firm participating in an inter-firm alliance can be constructed on the basis of ownership categories and market categories of the firm’s alliance partners.
The study focusses on a sample of 478 alliances involving 36 focal firms in the US semiconductor industry over a nine-year period (1995-2003). The sample is analyzed using logistic regression methods.
The author finds evidence suggesting that joint venture (JV) structures are more likely when an alliance has more partners that identify as privately held firms or subsidiaries of other firms. The results also suggest that JV structures are more likely when an alliance involves strong product market identity with partners and less likely when an alliance involves strong geographic identity with partners.
These findings provide some novel insights into potential heuristics that alliance managers use in making initial alliance structure decisions. In particular, this paper contributes to a growing stream of research that considers the optimal alliance structures for different partner configurations by showing the potential influence of partners’ identities in simplifying these important decisions.
While there is a large volume of entrepreneurial social capital research, the philosophical assumptions have received limited attention. The purpose of this paper is to…
While there is a large volume of entrepreneurial social capital research, the philosophical assumptions have received limited attention. The purpose of this paper is to review and classify entrepreneurial social capital studies according to the following approaches – objectivist (positivist-realist, structuralist) and subjectivist (social constructionist). There is a neglect of structure and agency, and the authors encourage a critical realist approach that permits an understanding of observable network structure, constraint-order and human agency as a dynamic system.
The ontological and epistemological assumptions, and associated strengths and weaknesses of objectivist (positivist-realist, structuralist) and subjectivist (social constructionist) entrepreneurial social capital studies are discussed. The case for a more progressive critical realist approach is developed.
The authors demonstrate that objectivist (positivist-realist, structuralist) research with findings bereft of situated meaning and agency dominates. The emergence of subjectivist research – narratively examining different network situations from the perspective of those embedded in networks – is an emerging and competing approach. This dualism is unlikely to comprehensively understand the complex system-level properties of social capital. Future research should adopt critical realism and fuse: objective data to demonstrate the material aspects of network structures and what structural social capital exists in particular settings; and subjective data that enhances an understanding of situated meaning, agency and intention in a network.
This paper contributes a review of entrepreneurial social capital research and philosophical foundations. The development of a critical realist approach to understanding social capital gestation permits a system-level analysis of network structure influencing conduct, and agency.