Synthesizing value creation in IORs for innovation six studies and a stretch of perspective from the specific to the general

Sammanfattning: This dissertation consists of six individual studies with the overall aim to contribute to understanding value creation in interorganizational relationships (IORs), which firms establish to achieve innovation. The six research papers address several specific research questions focusing on different aspects of IORs by using qualitative, quantitative and conceptual methods. The dissertation is divided into two parts. Part I is an introductory chapter to the six research papers. This part briefly introduces the research questions, methods, paper overviews, and provides some general discussions not emphasized in the specific papers. Part II consists of the six research papers, each presenting a unique inquiry, literature framework, and method. In brief, the six papers of this dissertation are: Paper I presents the benefits of working with the same partners in multiple (different) innovative processes. Paper II tests the influence between relationship characteristics (knowledge transfer, interorganizational trust, and relationship diversity) and networking firms' corporate entrepreneurship. Paper III tests the indirect effects of partner fit on networking firms' corporate entrepreneurship. Paper IV identifies and tests important factors for innovative performance in firm networks. Paper V tests the influence of compensating network board members on network performance. Paper VI theorizes how and why interorganizational trust can cause rigidities, which may be particularly bothersome in some kinds of IORs. Some general conclusions of the six studies are that they demonstrate the relevance of acknowledging social processes in studies of knowledge exchange; they also recognize that while literature suggesting that social aspects such as trust may be powerful in reducing perceived relational risks, research takes a biased path if it does not also properly acknowledge the risks and costs associated with it; and finally indicate that in discussions of trade-offs between flexibility and stability in IORs it may be useful to consider the dimension of exchange flexibility, that is, how flexible the partners are in what they exchange and when they do this. Some specific conclusions are that the studies demonstrate both antecedents to and consequences of corporate entrepreneurship (CE) in an IOR setting: in terms of antecedents, they explain why partner fit has an indirect effect on knowledge transfer and why CE has a direct effect on knowledge transfer, and in terms of consequences, they explain why knowledge transfer positively influences CE. The studies also suggest that when partners try to create conditions where they do not believe they might be exploited, there is a risk that rigidities in resources and routines develop. Further, they also show that design aspects, such as how the network is formed, configured, and governed, as well as compensation of network board members affect network performance.

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