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Article
Publication date: 8 January 2018

Shufang Huang, Jin Chen and Liang Liang

The link between openness and innovative performance has been established as an inverted U-shape relationship, namely, the openness-performance connection is not always…

Abstract

Purpose

The link between openness and innovative performance has been established as an inverted U-shape relationship, namely, the openness-performance connection is not always positive. The purpose of this paper is to introduce the concept of partner heterogeneity to characterize the influence of “quality” changes in partners on innovative performance, that is, the focus of this paper. Given that partner heterogeneity is crucial in explaining open innovative performance, it is also worth placing the examination of this key construct in emerging regions such as China.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample selection of this study covers a wide range of industries, but requires that the sample firms be manufacturing enterprises with an open innovation strategy. With opportunities and challenges associated with partner collaboration toward open innovation, the Chinese province of Zhejiang has established its reputation. Thus, empirical data were collected randomly from data pool of Zhejiang Province Economic and Information Commission, as well as a survey questionnaire. Data were using a cross-sectional survey methodology encompassing diverse organizations, industries, and nations.

Findings

Empirical testing of this assumption in a sample of 217 manufacturing firms indicates that partner heterogeneities, which are classified as organizational heterogeneity, industry heterogeneity, and national heterogeneity are all positively associated with innovative performance, but the strength of this association is influenced by environmental turbulence. Technological turbulence significantly and positively modulates the relationships of organizational and national heterogeneities with innovative performance. Market turbulence also plays a significant positive role on the relationship between national heterogeneity and innovative performance, while technological and market turbulence roles on the relationship between industry heterogeneity and innovative performance are not confirmed.

Originality/value

This paper refines the connotative dimensions of partner heterogeneity around the core concept of partner heterogeneity in open innovation in the context of emerging region, China. The study presents a systematic, in-depth analysis, and verifies the impact mechanisms of partner heterogeneity in open innovation on innovative performance by integrating the resource-based view, organizational learning theory, and transaction cost theory.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 56 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article
Publication date: 10 June 2019

Xiaoyu Liu, Harrie Vredenburg and Urs Daellenbach

The purpose of this paper is to untangle the impacts of a firm’s corporate reputation and its alliance partners’ social capital on its financial performance, drawing on…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to untangle the impacts of a firm’s corporate reputation and its alliance partners’ social capital on its financial performance, drawing on the relational and the network points of view.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper explored the moderating effect of corporate reputation on the relationship between partners’ social capital (e.g. resource heterogeneity, structural relations and partners’ social ties) and a focal firm’s performance. An OLS three-step regression model (controls, main effects and interaction effects) was used to test the proposed hypotheses based on 265 US joint ventures.

Findings

The influence of partners’ social capital on a focal firm’s performance is negatively moderated by the focal firm’s reputation at the firm and network levels; larger and more prestigious firms listed in Fortune database tend to choose partners with a higher level of resource heterogeneity, whereas smaller firms tend to choose partners in similar industries to increase economies of scale. The social capital factors of the partners will have different effects on the focal firm performance.

Originality/value

The value of this paper is in providing insight into the importance and nuances of corporate reputation in offsetting the advantages of inter-firm alliances and their impact on firm performance. In particular, the performance benefits of inter-firm alliance partners’ social ties and heterogeneous resources are negatively affected by the corporate reputation of a firm.

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Article
Publication date: 18 April 2017

Sanjay Mishra, Surendra N. Singh, Xiang Fang and Bingqing Yin

Co-branding is popular with partnerships between well-known and new brands. In a laboratory study, this paper aims to examine the effects of a single ally and multiple…

Abstract

Purpose

Co-branding is popular with partnerships between well-known and new brands. In a laboratory study, this paper aims to examine the effects of a single ally and multiple allies on quality perception of a brand. The results suggest that the quality perception of the new brand depends on the co-branding strategy.

Design/methodology/approach

For dual-brand alliances, a single-factor design was used, with secondary brand quality level (high, medium and low) as the independent variable. Three advertisements were created by manipulating quality levels of the single partner. For multiple-brand alliances, a 2 × 3 between-subjects factorial design was used in the experiment. The two factors were diversification (homogeneous vs heterogeneous) and quality levels of the alliance (high-end, mixed and low-end).

Findings

The results suggest that the number of brand partners significantly affected the perceived quality of the primary brand. For both dual- and multi-brand alliances, the quality level of the secondary brand positively influenced the perceived quality of the primary brand. For multiple-brand alliances, even though the highest quality perceptions of the primary brand are in the heterogeneous conditions, the heterogeneity of partners (partners across different product categories) did not affect the quality perception of the primary brand.

Research limitations/implications

One limitation of the current study is that it only addresses one type of brand alliance: co-promotion. The generalization of these findings to other forms of brand alliances (e.g. ingredient branding: Intel with IBM, Dell and HP) merits further investigation. Also, in this study, respondents processed the information in a relatively low-involvement condition (note that the target ad was presented along with filler ads). They were more likely to use brand names as heuristic cues to form their judgments. Because an alliance partner also assumes risks, future research should consider the effect of the alliances on the secondary brand.

Practical implications

Understanding brand alliances (especially multiple-brand alliances) is critical for new product managers and marketers. Introducing a new brand has higher risk and failure rates. Companies may lower these risks by co-branding with established brands. However, they should carefully consider the diversification and quality level of the partners. If brand managers position their product as “high quality (luxury)” or “low quality (budget)”, they should choose high- (or low-) quality partners from different product categories (heterogeneous high-end or low-end alliances) because diversification strengthens the primary brand. For a single-partner alliance, the secondary brand should be of high quality.

Originality/value

This paper extends the brand alliance literature beyond single-partner to multiple-partner alliances. With multiple partners, one can explore several critical aspects of an alliance, e.g. quality variance and product class diversity across the partners.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 26 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

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Article
Publication date: 16 October 2020

JungYun Han and Ribuga Kang

While prior alliance literature has focused on how firms exploit alliance strategies to enhance performance and innovation, little is known about whether market…

Abstract

Purpose

While prior alliance literature has focused on how firms exploit alliance strategies to enhance performance and innovation, little is known about whether market uncertainty increases, decreases or has no effect on innovation outcomes of firms involved in alliances, and under what conditions these firms promote innovation in an uncertain market through alliances. Relatedly, innovation research has examined the impact of environmental uncertainty on innovation; however, this line of research does not answer the question in the alliance context.

Design/methodology/approach

Using data of firms engaged in alliances in the US pharmaceutical and biotechnical industries between 1990 and 2015, the authors examine firms' alliance partner characteristics and innovation outputs in terms of innovation quantity and exploratory innovation.

Findings

We find that market uncertainty hampers innovation quantity and exploratory innovation of firms involved in alliances, because in this environment, relational risks and coordination challenges outweigh the benefits of knowledge sharing from partners. However, the authors find that alliance partners' characteristics such as a different industry and different country origins mitigate the negative effect of market uncertainty on these firms' innovation by offering new business opportunities and enhancing their learning capability.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the alliance literature by addressing a significant question of whether and how market uncertainty matters in the innovation output of firms involved in alliances and how these firms address the environmental challenges and promote innovation. The study also contributes to innovation research by delineating the nature of market uncertainty and its impact on innovation in an alliance context.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

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Article
Publication date: 8 October 2018

Paula Ungureanu, Fabiola Bertolotti and Diego Macri

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role played by turbulent environments in the evolution of hybrid (i.e. multi-party, cross-sector) partnerships for regional…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role played by turbulent environments in the evolution of hybrid (i.e. multi-party, cross-sector) partnerships for regional innovation. Although extant research suggests that organizations decide to participate in such partnerships to cope with their turbulent environments, little is known about how actual perceptions of turbulent environments influence the setup and evolution of a partnership.

Design/methodology/approach

The qualitative study adopts a longitudinal design to investigate the evolution of a cross-sector regional innovation partnership between ten very different organizations. With the help of the VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity) model proposed by Bennett and Lemoine (2014a), the authors study the relation between partners’ initial perceptions of environmental turbulence and the models adopted for the partnership throughout its lifecycle (emergent, brokering and platform).

Findings

The authors show that partners’ intentions to solve perceived environmental turbulence through collaboration can have the unexpected consequence of triggering perceived turbulence inside the collaboration itself. Specifically, the authors show that perceived partnership VUCA at each stage is a result of partners’ attempts to cope with the perceived VUCA in the previous stage.

Practical implications

The study highlights a set of common traps that both public and private organizations engaged in hybrid partnerships might fall into precisely as they try to lower VUCA threats in their environments.

Originality/value

The work accounts for the relationship between external and internal perceptions of VUCA in hybrid partnerships for regional innovation, and, in particular, provides a better understanding of what happens when organizations choose to enter hybrid partnerships in order to deal with perceived threats in their environments.

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Article
Publication date: 10 August 2015

Ghasem Shiri, Loïc Sauvée and Zam-Zam Abdirahman

The purpose of this paper is to study the impact of networks diversity on innovation activity of firms. It aims to review the structural issue in innovation networks and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study the impact of networks diversity on innovation activity of firms. It aims to review the structural issue in innovation networks and to distinguish different structures of networks for product and process innovation through an empirical research.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a data set of 348 European agri-food firms, the authors study the impact of bridge and redundant ties on product and process innovation of firms. This is an empirical research based on an online survey in five European countries.

Findings

The finding shows that bridge ties (measured by the number of heterogeneous networks in which firm participate) always facilitate product innovation in firms. The authors found also that a high number of heterogeneous ties in term of partners (simultaneous presence of redundant and non-redundant ties) motivate both product and process innovation in firms. Furthermore, the authors found a positive impact of network competence on process innovation.

Research limitations/implications

The measures of bridge ties and redundant ties are indirect measures. This choice is a willing choice. Direct measurement of bridge and redundant ties always requires in-depth interviews with firms managers and thereby are limited by the number of observations.

Originality/value

Research on innovations networks are dominated by case studies and researches with limited number of observations. Studying the networking behaviour, particularly the tie selection, of a wide range of firms brings additional knowledge in this field of research.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

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Article
Publication date: 5 March 2018

Simon von Danwitz

The management of major inter-firm projects requires a coherent, holistic governance framework to be effective. However, most existing models of project governance are…

Abstract

Purpose

The management of major inter-firm projects requires a coherent, holistic governance framework to be effective. However, most existing models of project governance are limited to a narrow selection of contractual, structural or procedural aspects, and further neglect contextual factors, such as key characteristics of a project and its partners. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

This conceptual paper proposes an integrative analytical model of inter-firm project governance, building upon contingency theory and drawing from established constructs rooted in organization theory.

Findings

The paper aims to integrate two largely distinct streams of research and synthesize the respective constitutive dimensions of project governance into a coherent conceptual model. Further, interrelationships with contextual factors, such as project-related and partner-related characteristics, and project performance are discussed.

Originality/value

The proposed model purposefully merges two complementary streams of project governance research. As the model further provides clear contextual factors, it strengthens an emerging stream of project research by systematically examining external influences of project organizing. Future research may utilize this model and the suggested operationalization for each of the constructs as a basis to empirically investigate the design and effectiveness of governance regimes of major projects.

Details

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, vol. 11 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8378

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Article
Publication date: 18 November 2018

Subhasree Mukherjee and Deepak Dhayanithy

By applying upper echelons perspective to the choice of full or shared control entry modes, this study aims to explore the moderating effect of interorganizational network…

Abstract

Purpose

By applying upper echelons perspective to the choice of full or shared control entry modes, this study aims to explore the moderating effect of interorganizational network on the top management team (TMT) characteristics and entry mode choice relationship. Existing studies on TMT’s demographic characters’ influence on entry mode choice remains inconclusive. The implicit assumption in extant literature is that firms share similar network structural advantages. This study integrates the largely ignored, network structural concept with entry mode to show how firm-level decisions are the outcome of interaction between internal and external environment.

Design/methodology/approach

The interorganizational network is modeled using board interlock data. The moderating effect of network is modeled on network size, centrality of the firms and density of ties, considering tenure and international experience of the upper echelons. The hypotheses are tested based on a sample of 83 publicly listed Indian firms from 2012 to 2015.

Findings

The findings indicate that despite a high international experienced TMT’s preference of full control entry mode, the high central position of the firm can influence the decision against full control entry modes. However, the choice of full control entry mode is also enhanced by the density of firm’s network. Similar evidence is also observed with tenure variable as well where the moderating variables showed a trend toward influencing the entry mode choices.

Originality/value

Thus, this study attempted to reconcile the inconsistencies prevalent in the relationship between TMT variables and choice of entry mode by introducing the contextual factor of interorganizational networks.

Details

Journal of Indian Business Research, vol. 11 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-4195

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2015

Giovanni Battista Dagnino, Gabriella Levanti, Anna Minà and Pasquale Massimo Picone

This paper aims to explore the latent structure of the literature on interorganizational network and innovation as well as to map the main themes and empirical advances in…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the latent structure of the literature on interorganizational network and innovation as well as to map the main themes and empirical advances in this research stream.

Design/methodology/approach

Using bibliometric coupling, the authors analyze the citation patterns in 67 management studies regarding innovation networks, published in ISI-journals from January 1996 to October 2012.

Findings

The authors identify the conceptual orientations that studies share. Bibliometric analysis allows us to draw an overview of how this field of research has developed, recognizing in essence six main clustered research themes: networks as a framework that sustains firm innovativeness in specific contexts; network dimensions and knowledge processes; networks as a means to access and share resources/knowledge; the interplay between firm and network characteristics and its effects on innovative processes; empirical research on networks in highly dynamic industries; and the influence of industry knowledge domain’s peculiarities on network dimensions and characteristics.

Research limitations/implications

By providing a comprehensive survey of current trends in the literature on interorganizational network and innovation, the authors eventually identify the major gaps in our knowledge and help refocusing the current research agenda in this increasingly relevant research stream.

Practical implications

The systematic introduction to the field of innovation networks is of notable interest to scholars and practitioners, who have (or desire to have) some awareness in the topic. Here, practitioners may find their compass to acquire some knowledge on innovation networks and orient their choices.

Originality/value

First, the spatially organized picture of the intellectual structure of the literature the authors offer is the initial thought-out comprehensive introduction to the field of on interorganizational network and innovation. Second, by developing a thorough bibliometric analysis of the extant bulk of the innovation networks literature, the authors develop specific methodological contribution. Third, we are able to map the intellectual structure in a two-dimensional space to visualize spatial distances between intellectual themes.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 30 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

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Article
Publication date: 13 August 2018

Jinjuan Zang

Existing research has demonstrated that the innovation implications of structural holes are inconsistent. The diverse and broad resources associated with structural holes…

Abstract

Purpose

Existing research has demonstrated that the innovation implications of structural holes are inconsistent. The diverse and broad resources associated with structural holes facilitate innovation. On the contrary, brokerage will also hinder trust and increase the opportunism behaviors among partners, which will damage innovation. Inspired by the conflicting conclusions, the purpose of this paper is to analyze the roles of structural holes on exploratory innovation and exploitative innovation.

Design/methodology/approach

To test the model, the paper used a panel of 305 US computer focal firms and 6,894 alliances from the period spanning 1993 to 2004, and adopted the Heckman two-stage selection procedure in predicting the results.

Findings

The results show that structural holes help firms to develop exploratory innovation while negatively impacting exploitative innovation.

Originality/value

This study offers precise insights on inconsistent understandings between structural holes and innovation by differentiating exploratory innovation from exploitative innovation. Furthermore, it contributes to the burgeoning literature on exploration and exploitation from the network perspective.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 56 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

Keywords

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