Session 180

Relational Dynamics in Alliances: Signals, Repairs, and Horizontal Partners

Track N

Date: Tuesday, October 6, 2015


Time: 17:30 – 18:45


Room: Director's Row I

Session Chair:

  • Laura Poppo, University of Kansas

Title: Prior Litigation and Alliance Formation: When a Signal is both Positive and Negative


  • Se Won Park, IE Business School
  • Luis Diestre, IE Business School

Abstract: We adopt a signaling theory perspective to propose that a firm’s past patent infringements sends both a negative intent signal and a positive skills signal. Specifically, we predict that allying with a past patent infringer increases both, the probability that knowledge misappropriation problems will arise and the probability of alliance success. The question is then whether a potential partner’s patent infringement history is a positive or negative driver of alliance formation. We develop a model on how repeated signaling increases signal accuracy to claim that prior litigation will have an inverted U-shaped effect on the probability of alliance formation. We test our theory in a sample of 642 alliances in the U.S. pharmaceutical industry and find empirical support for the proposed model.

Title: Relational Roller Coaster: A Process View of Inter-Organizational Trust Repair


  • Anna Brattström, Lund University
  • Martin Carlsson Wall, Stockholm School of Economics
  • Dries Faems, University of Groningen
  • Magnus Mähring, Stockholm School of Economics

Abstract: Conducting an inductive longitudinal case study of one inter-organizational relationship, we develop a grounded process model of inter-organizational trust repair. Whereas trust repair has traditionally been conceptualized as a planned and intentional process, our process model provides an emergent perspective on trust repair, illuminating how particular actions can have unexpected and counterintuitive implications for the repair of trust. We suggest that inter-organizational trust repair can be understood as a multi-level relational roller coaster ride, during which members of different intra-organizational groups can not only converge, but also diverge regarding their trust in the partner organization. Moreover, we point to specific cognitive mechanisms – attention shifts and category activations – to theoretically understand these cross-group convergence and divergence patterns.

Title: Resource Entrenchment, Media Coverage, and Alliance Portfolios


  • A. Erin Bass, University of Nebraska - Omaha
  • Varkey Titus, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  • Owen Parker, Oklahoma State University

Abstract: A consistent theme across cooperation research is to ask why organizations form cooperative arrangements with competitors. We extend this theme by asking why organizations might form cooperative arrangements with direct substitutes. We argue that resource entrenchment—a firm's long-term commitments to a particular, industry-specific resource—motivates firms to ally with other same-industry competitors to shore up the long-run viability of the organizational field. Firms with low resource entrenchment, on the other hand, will be more opportunistic in their alliances, favoring alliances with firms investing in new and potentially disruptive technologies. We then propose that the tenor of media attention to both the focal firm and its industry will moderate this relationship.

All Sessions in Track N...

Sun: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 197: A Session in Honor of Ulrich Wassmer
Sun: 09:45 – 11:00
Session 27: Public-Private Partnerships: Capabilities and Organizational Design
Sun: 11:15 – 12:30
Session 196: Perspectives and Dynamics of Committed Relationships
Sun: 16:15 – 17:30
Session 171: How to Govern Alliances: Boards, Multi-market Competition, and Social Capital
Sun: 17:45 – 00:00
Session 323: Cooperative Strategies Business Meeting
Mon: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 88: Firm Boundaries: Theories of New Sources of Competitive Advantage
Session 176: Different Perspectives Informing Governance Choices: Partner Choice in Alliances vs. Acquisitions
Mon: 11:15 – 12:30
Session 186: Outsourcing, Offshoring, and the Changing Nature of Firm Boundaries
Mon: 13:45 – 15:00
Session 177: The Dynamics of Coopetition
Mon: 16:45 – 18:00
Session 173: Learning and Routines: Implications for Alliances, Organizational Design, and Capabilities
Tue: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 178: A Conversation of Different Paths Underlying Innovation
Session 179: Alliance Formation and Its Effects including the Influence of Political Connections & Venture Capital
Tue: 11:00 – 12:15
Session 184: Multiple Lenses on the Determinants and Effectivenss of Contracts
Tue: 14:15 – 15:30
Session 185: Partner Selection, Committment, and Switching
Session 275: External Interface Processes and their Consequences
Tue: 15:45 – 17:00
Session 183: Alliance Termination and Survival
Tue: 17:30 – 18:45
Session 180: Relational Dynamics in Alliances: Signals, Repairs, and Horizontal Partners
Session 182: Alliances: From Understanding Drivers of Performance to Value-Creation

Strategic Management Society