Session 104

Institutions Cultures and Languages in Strategic Discourse

Track C

Date: Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Time: 11:00 – 12:15

Common Ground

Room: Bernini 2


  • Tina Dacin, Queen's University

Title: Does Culture Affect the Choice of Control Strategy? - An Exploratory Study


  • Xinhua Wittmann, University of Zurich
  • Alexander Wagner, University of Zurich
  • Andrea Schenker, University of Zurich

Abstract: This paper examines how control strategy varies and to what extent the relationship between control modes and perceived effectiveness of control strategy is shaped by cultural dimensions. Based on the statistical analysis of empirical data from IT sector in six countries, we find that the positive correlation between formal control and perceived effectiveness of control strategy becomes stronger for higher uncertainty avoidance societies; masculinity shows a negative moderation effect on the relationship between informal control and perceived effectiveness of control strategy; and employee received trust has greater impact on perceived effectiveness of control strategy in collectivistic societies than in individualistic societies. These findings qualify existing research on the potentially conflicting role of trust and control and have important implications for management practice in intercultural context.

Title: Institutional Distance During Uncertainty: When Foreignness Isn’t Such a Liability


  • Keith Kelley, Florida International University
  • Yannick Thams, Suffolk University
  • Marcelo Alvarado-Vargas, University of Toledo
  • Kun Yang, Central Michigan University

Abstract: This paper explores the supposed negative relationship between institutional distance and firm performance in the context of global economic uncertainty. Using a large sample of US multinationals, the authors intend to show that institutional distance will have a positive impact on firm performance during times of uncertainty. The authors will use aggregate measures of institutional distance along normative, cognitive and regulative dimensions, and will compare MNE performance over a period of four years from 2005-2008. It is expected that MNEs with higher levels of institutional distance will perform better than those with lesser amounts during times of uncertainty or that uncertainty will moderate the negative relationship between institutional distance and firm performance such that it becomes weaker.

Title: International Diversification and Firm Performance: A Multi-Level Exploration of Firm and Home Country Institutional Factors


  • Bo Nielsen, Copenhagen Business School
  • Sabina Nielsen, Copenhagen Business School

Abstract: Using a longitudinal sample of the international diversification behavior of the world’s 2000 largest MNCs, originating from 43 countries, we explored the moderating impact of firm and country level factors on the relationship between international diversification and performance. The results confirm the recently proposed S-curve relationship between international diversification and performance, and a positive interaction effect between product and international diversification. In addition, we find support for our main argument that whereas home country regulative institutions positively moderate the international diversification - performance relationship, normative institutions have the opposite moderating effect.

Title: Language and Perceptions of Member Performance in Multinational Teams


  • Margaret Schomaker, Laval University
  • Srilata Zaheer, University of Minnesota

Abstract: Whether between or within firms, geographic dispersion of activities has led to reliance on cross-border teamwork, with all its attendant difficulties. We consider language as one source of diversity affecting teamwork, but move beyond the obvious communication issues to look at how language differences influence perceptions of others’ performance. Taking a multidisciplinary approach, we use theory from teams literature, foreign language acquisition, and psychology to argue that perceptions of team member performance are positively affected by the linguistic relatedness between team lingua franca and a member’s primary language and by the member’s fluency in the lingua franca. We further claim that in-person interaction and international experience will mitigate the negative effects of low linguistic relatedness and lack of fluency on perceptions of performance.

Title: Robust Inter-Institutional Collaboration at ATLAS CERN: Implications for Large Scale Business and Cross-Sectoral Collaborations


  • Philipp Tuertscher, WU Vienna
  • Raghuram Garud, Penn State University
  • Barbara Gray, Penn State University

Abstract: Large-scale, inter-institutional collaborations in science and society offer intriguing models for future business relationships. Our paper explores the social architecture of collaboration in the ATLAS Project at CERN in Switzerland--a collaboration among more than 2,800 physicists, engineers and administrators hailing from 169 institutions in 37 countries who have designed and constructed a detector to study the results of sub-atomic particle collisions. We investigate several facets of this robust collaboration including its socio-material aspects, the evolution of its social architecture, and mechanisms for addressing scientific and social controversies. We consider implications for designing similar large scale collaborations among business and between business and other sectors of society.

Title: When Trade Associations Matter: A Strategic Configuration Framework for Exerting Influence


  • Thomas Lawton, Open University

Abstract: Many trade associations are failing to consider all available structure types in their political lobbying activity and as a consequence, reducing their influence on policy actors and outcomes. Associations are actively engaged with government, particularly in highly regulated industries such as pharmaceuticals, food and utilities. Despite the wealth of literature in political science on trade associations and in strategic management on corporate political strategy, little has been written on how trade associations can effectively develop their political strategy and structure to influence government actors on behalf of members. In this paper, we extend a central paradigm of strategic management into to the trade association environment so as to foster a better understanding of the strategic decision making process that leads to structure development and performance.

All Sessions in Track C...

Mon: 09:45 – 11:00
Session 100: Coopetition Tension: Emerging Conceptual Issues
Mon: 11:15 – 12:30
Session 107: Power and Political Factors at the Crossroads of Contexts and Cultures
Mon: 15:15 – 16:30
Session 101: Diverse Perspectives on Understanding and Managing Coopetition Tension
Tue: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 108: Interfirm Ties and Nodes: Strategic Alliances, Joint Ventures, Regional Systems and Business Groups
Tue: 17:00 – 18:15
Session 103: Institutions and Strategy
Wed: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 109: Boards, Teams and Cross-Cultural Research in Strategy
Wed: 11:00 – 12:15
Session 104: Institutions Cultures and Languages in Strategic Discourse

Strategic Management Society