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Article
Publication date: 31 December 2021

Scott DuHadway, Carlos Mena and Lisa Marie Ellram

Supply chain fraud is a significant global concern for firms, consumers and governments. Evidence of major fraud events suggests the role of supply chain structures in…

Abstract

Purpose

Supply chain fraud is a significant global concern for firms, consumers and governments. Evidence of major fraud events suggests the role of supply chain structures in enabling and facilitating fraud, as they often involve several parties in complicated networks designed to obfuscate the fraud. This paper identifies how the structural characteristics of supply chains can play an important role in enabling, facilitating and preventing fraud.

Design/methodology/approach

The research follows a theory elaboration approach. The authors build on structural holes theory in conjunction with a multiple case study research design to identify new concepts and develop propositions regarding the role of network structure on supply chain fraud.

Findings

This research shows how structural holes in a supply chain can create advantages for unscrupulous firms, a role we call tertius fraudans, or the cheating third. This situation is exacerbated by structural ignorance, which refers to the lack of knowledge about structural connections in the network. Both structural holes and structural ignorance can create information gaps that facilitate fraud, and the authors propose solutions to detect and prevent this kind of fraud.

Originality/value

This paper extends structural holes theory into the domain of fraud. Novel concepts including tertius fraudans, structural ignorance and bridge collapse are offered, alongside a series of propositions that can help understand and manage structural supply chain fraud.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 42 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 February 2021

Jiayuan Liu and Jianzhou Yan

This study examines the relationships between structural holes, guanxi and knowledge sharing among groups of stakeholders within a Chinese destination network.

Abstract

Purpose

This study examines the relationships between structural holes, guanxi and knowledge sharing among groups of stakeholders within a Chinese destination network.

Design/methodology/approach

This study conducted surveys, social network analysis and semi-structured interviews to gather data from the stakeholders of a popular Chinese tourist destination to test its hypotheses.

Findings

Knowledge sharing within the destination network was impeded by structural holes but facilitated by guanxi. Furthermore, the impeding effect of structural holes on knowledge sharing is alleviated by guanxi.

Originality/value

This study illustrates the ways that stakeholders exploit structural holes and guanxi to promote knowledge sharing, and thus offers novel insights into how destination network structures affect the efficacy of stakeholders when it comes to sharing knowledge and promoting their destination.

Details

Journal of Organizational Change Management, vol. 35 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0953-4814

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 14 July 2014

Ronald S. Burt and Jennifer Merluzzi

The structural holes to which a person is connected are embedded in a broader organization or market. High status in the broader context signals a reputation that can make…

Abstract

The structural holes to which a person is connected are embedded in a broader organization or market. High status in the broader context signals a reputation that can make a would-be broker more attractive, more likely to engage opportunities to broker, and allay audience concerns about proposed brokerage. The implications are correlation and contingency. We offer illustrative evidence of both implications and conclude that status and structural holes are so closely related in concept and fact that advantage is more clearly revealed when the two network forms are analyzed together as complements defining the hubs in a network.

Details

Contemporary Perspectives on Organizational Social Networks
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-751-1

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 1 February 2005

Linn Van Dyne and Soon Ang

In this chapter, we draw on social capital and role theories to develop a theoretical model of global leader initiative and reputational effectiveness in spanning…

Abstract

In this chapter, we draw on social capital and role theories to develop a theoretical model of global leader initiative and reputational effectiveness in spanning structural holes. We define global leaders as those assigned to work locations outside the borders of their home country. Global leaders (by virtue of their global work assignments) occupy structural holes that span geographical boundaries. By definition, this position provides them with special opportunities to use their social capital to span these structural holes. Our model aims to make two key contributions. First, we focus on firm and individual factors that influence the extent to which global leaders proactively use their social capital. Second, we address local, corporate, and personal factors that influence the relationship between spanning behavior and reputational effectiveness. We discuss research implications for testing our propositions and practical implications for applying the model to work organizations, with an emphasis on the benefits of more effectively leveraging the social capital of global leaders.

Details

Advances in Global Leadership
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-160-6

Article
Publication date: 10 August 2021

Guan Feiyang, Wang Tienan, Sun Linbing and Tang Liqing

The authors selected global automobile manufacturing firms whose sales ranked within 100 in the five years from 2014 to 2018 in the Factiva database to examine how the…

Abstract

Purpose

The authors selected global automobile manufacturing firms whose sales ranked within 100 in the five years from 2014 to 2018 in the Factiva database to examine how the characteristics of a firm's whole network and ego-network in a transnational coopetition network influence network performance.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors analyzed the public news of the sample firms about the coopetition by structural content analysis to build the coopetition networks and access to data on the competitive actions of firms. Then, to measure the variables associated with the coopetition network, such as the structural hole, centrality and ego-network stability, the authors use UCINET 6 that is a widely used piece of software for social network analysis to establishing five undirected binary adjacency matrices.

Findings

The authors find that a firm's competitive aggressiveness mediates the relationship between a firm's whole network position and network performance that emphasizes the need for integrating competitive dynamics research and coopetition research and shows how valuable insights can be gained through such integration. And the interaction of structural hole and centrality impacts competitive aggressiveness and network performance, and the interaction is different under high and low ego-network stability. The integration of whole network and ego-network literature studies provides new insights into firm network literature.

Practical implications

In the process of cooperation, firms should consider whether they can occupy the structural hole and center as important indicators for partner selection. Too stable relationship will prevent firms from obtaining new resources. Firms should weigh the period of cooperation according to specific situation.

Originality/value

These results indicate that ego-network stability, as an important complementary characteristic of coopetition network, has a significant synergistic effect with structural holes and centrality on competitive aggressiveness and network performance. And these findings expand the current literature on the relationship between characteristics of network, competitive aggressiveness and network performance.

Details

Journal of Enterprise Information Management, vol. 35 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0398

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 9 August 2011

Ren Lu and Torger Reve

Understanding China's economic success requires insights into its peculiar guanxi‐based market. Many scholars are confused about how to apply Western network theories to…

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Abstract

Purpose

Understanding China's economic success requires insights into its peculiar guanxi‐based market. Many scholars are confused about how to apply Western network theories to the guanxi‐based Chinese market. This paper aims to contribute to this comprehensive topic by theoretically exploring the differences among three fundamental network concepts: guanxi; structural hole; and closure.

Design/methodology/approach

Following Heide, the present paper categorises networks into three dimensions: network initiation, network maintenance and network termination, each based on different time phases. The three fundamental network concepts in every dimension are compared, laying out their similarities and dissimilarities in detail.

Findings

Although each of the three networks are initiated either naturally or artificially, guanxi is closely embedded in Chinese institutions. Unlike structural hole and closure, which can be applied at any level, guanxi is a special relation that only exists at the individual level. Structural hole and closure highlight the structures of the networks that bring them various benefits and constraints. Such merits are not evident in guanxi, in which favour exchange plays a crucial role in connecting entities. In addition, guanxi has special rules that affect the strength of ties.

Originality/value

The purpose of this paper is to articulate the differences among guanxi, structural hole and closure. The systematic framework provides a platform to scholars interested in applying the Western network theory to guanxi‐based markets. The study work also provides new insights to non‐Chinese actors doing business in China.

Details

Journal of Strategy and Management, vol. 4 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-425X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 29 September 2021

Pengfei Han, Haifeng Wang and Peihua Fan

Along with the important impact of green strategies on firm survival and performance improvement, its dark side likewise requires attention. By integrating network…

Abstract

Purpose

Along with the important impact of green strategies on firm survival and performance improvement, its dark side likewise requires attention. By integrating network evolution theory with the literature on green supply chain management, this study proposes a theoretical framework consisting of green strategies, network conduct (cooperation length), network structure (structural holes) and relationship maintenance. The purpose of this study is to indicate how green strategies can affect relationship maintenance on the basis of a network evolution perspective, and demonstrate how this effect can be influenced by cooperation length and structural holes.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a sample of 122 matched pairs of the upstream and downstream supply chain from the Chinese paper-making industry, which is in urgent requirement of green strategies due to high pollution and resource consumption.

Findings

This study theoretically and empirically indicates that green strategies may have a positive impact on relationship maintenance. In addition, this effect can be positively moderated by cooperation length, but negatively moderated by structural holes.

Originality/value

This study uncovers the impact of green strategies on relationship maintenance by proposing a network evolution perspective, which could solve its conflicting effects in a specific context and move extant research a step forward.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 37 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 May 2022

Xiaoming Sun, Fayou Lei, Yalan Wang and Ruobing Ren

The purpose of this paper is to study the influence mechanism of different levels of social capital (Structure holes–local network attributes and indirect ties–global…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study the influence mechanism of different levels of social capital (Structure holes–local network attributes and indirect ties–global network attributes) and organizational culture on the creativity of key inventors, and the role of organizational culture between social capital and creativity.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper tested the hypotheses with a sample of patent data accumulated from 46 firms in Chinese electronic information and automobile sectors. Negative binomial regression was used to explore the factors influencing the creativity of key inventors.

Findings

The paper discovers that structural holes are valuable social capital for the creativity of key inventors and very important in firms with a collective and conservative culture. Moreover, it also locates that key inventor are more creative in firms with an individualistic and competitive culture than those in firms with a collective and conservative culture.

Originality/value

This study emphasizes the influence of social capital on creativity and contributes to R&D management. It highlights structural holes are certainly important to key inventors in a collective and conservative culture, thus contradicting preceding studies that locate structural holes useful solely in an individualistic culture. This finding broadens our knowledge of the benefits of this network structure. Also, this debate challenges several basic views on structural holes currently.

Details

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

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 January 2022

Cong Liu, Jiming Cao, Guangdong Wu, Xianbo Zhao and Jian Zuo

This study aims to explore the relationship between network position, various types of inter-organizational conflicts and project performance in the context of megaprojects.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to explore the relationship between network position, various types of inter-organizational conflicts and project performance in the context of megaprojects.

Design/methodology/approach

Centrality and structural holes were used to represent network position. A theoretical model was developed, and a structured questionnaire survey was conducted with construction professionals involved in megaprojects. A total of 291 valid responses were obtained, which were analyzed via structural equation modeling.

Findings

The results showed that centrality negatively impacts project performance, while structural holes do not significantly impact project performance. Centrality negatively affects task conflicts, but positively affects process conflicts and relationship conflicts. Structural holes positively impact task conflicts, but negatively impact both process conflicts and relationship conflicts. Task conflict and relationship conflict exert constructive and destructive effects on project performance, respectively, while process conflict does not significantly impact project performance. Task conflict and relationship conflict play mediating roles. Task conflict weakens while relationship conflict strengthens the relationship between centrality and project performance. Task conflict strengthens while relationship conflict weakens the relationship between structure hole and project performance.

Research limitations/implications

This study provides a reference for the implementation of network governance, inter-organizational conflict management and project performance management in megaprojects. However, the impact of dynamic changes of inter-organizational conflicts and network position on project performance has not been discussed in the context of megaprojects. Future research may explore the impact of dynamic changes of conflicts and network position on project implementation.

Originality/value

This study increases the current understanding of the impact of network position on project performance. Moreover, a new direction for network governance in the context of megaprojects is provided. This study also verified both the constructive and destructive effects of conflicts and the mediating role they play, thus supplementing the literature on inter-organizational conflict management in the construction field.

Details

International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 33 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 July 2012

Fausto Di Vincenzo, Jens Hemphälä, Mats Magnusson and Daniele Mascia

There is a lack of studies investigating the role of the structural configuration of social capital – more specifically, structural holes – for employees' individual

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Abstract

Purpose

There is a lack of studies investigating the role of the structural configuration of social capital – more specifically, structural holes – for employees' individual learning. The objective of this paper is to address this gap in the literature, ultimately enhancing understanding of the link between the structural configuration of social capital and individual learning.

Design/methodology/approach

An online questionnaire survey was administered to employees affiliated to 22 pharmacies in Sweden to gather attributional and relational data on the individual level. Social network analysis techniques were used to describe salient structural characteristics of individuals' social capital. The impact of social capital on individual learning was explored through ordinal logistic regression models based on maximum likelihood estimations.

Findings

The presence of structural holes initially increases the degree of individual learning, then reaches a maximum and begins to gradually decrease.

Practical implications

The results of the study provide valuable input for the development and management of networks within firms, in order to improve learning and innovation. In addition, given the close proximity between learning, as conceptualized in this study, and other job attitudes, human resource management practices in general could benefit greatly from the results.

Originality/value

In this paper, the authors focus on the structural configuration of social capital, more specifically structural holes, and its inter‐relationship with learning. Although prior literature has analyzed various beneficial effects of social capital, this study is the first of its kind to investigate the role of the structural configuration of the social capital for employees' individual learning.

Details

Journal of Knowledge Management, vol. 16 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1367-3270

Keywords

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