Session 179

Environmental Dynamism and Firm Behavior

Track C

Date: Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Time: 10:00 – 11:15


Room: Meeting Room 8

Session Chair:
Justin Jansen, Erasmus University Rotterdam

Title: Contextual Ambidexterity - A Silver Bullet For Superior Performance: Investigating Environmental Moderators


  • Sven Kunisch, University of St. Gallen

Abstract: Contextual ambidexterity, conceptualized by Gibson and Birkinshaw (2004) as a means to balance exploration and exploitation at a business unit-level, is presumed an organizational capacity which facilitates superior performance. In this paper, we not only seek for further empirical evidence for the contextual ambidexterity-performance relationship but also explore its boundary conditions, which have been disregarded thus far. Specifically, we advance the argument that the relationship is moderated by environmental factors. Drawing on three important characteristics of the external environment, we develop testable hypotheses respectively. Somewhat counterintuitive, the hypotheses suggest a certain conservatism in expectations with respect to the performance impact of contextual ambidexterity. The study mainly contributes to the ambidexterity research stream, as it aids surmounting indicated shortcomings in the literature.

Title: Intra-Industry Exits in Growing Markets: Endogenous Evolution of Firms’ Geographic Scope


  • Lalit Manral, University of Central Oklahoma
  • Kathryn Harrigan, Columbia University

Abstract: The demand-side analysis of industry dynamics contained herein focuses on the dynamics of firms’ endogenous horizontal scope decisions. The endogeneity of firms’ horizontal scope decisions render it difficult to isolate their performance implications. Our data, which is drawn from a natural experiment, allows us to develop testable hypotheses concerning the exit behavior of firms. In a panel data setting of a horizontally fragmented industry we show how firms’ exit is not a single event but one that plays out over a period as they contract. In a horizontally fragmented industry firms’ exit decision is endogenous to their strategic choice of horizontal scope and thereby the investments underlying these choices. Horizontally diversified firms withdraw from certain segments before their eventual exit from the industry.

Title: Situational Determinates of R&D Innovation and the Moderating Effect of Slack Resources


  • Galia Rosen Schwarz, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology
  • Zur Shapira, New York University

Abstract: We extend the behavioral theory of R&D innovation along four lines; first, we broaden the scope of learning from performance feedback in terms of: motivation ( a focus on survival versus a focus on aspirations), time impact (short versus long term impact) and comparisons (self versus social comparisons). Second, we explore the direct impact of performance feedback on both R&D expenditures and R&D innovation and argue that this impact is conditional upon situational factors. Third, we consider the moderating effect of available slack resources on performance feedback learning. Finally, we complement former traditional industries studies and will test our propositions on a sample of 600 high tech firms traded in the US between 1988 and 2004, from 11 different industries.

Title: The Faster, the Better?: Knowledge Search Speed in the Fog of War for Industry Standard-Setting


  • Bongsun Kim, Korea University Business School
  • Eonsoo Kim, Korea University

Abstract: Knowledge search speed can be a source of competitive advantage in knowledge-intensive industries. Prior studies have rarely dealt with search speed in knowledge domain and its interaction with environmental contingencies. Racing for an industry standard-setting creates a highly uncertain environment. This study examines how a firm’s comparative search speed in knowledge-searching competition influences innovation performance, in an uncertain environment surrounding an industry standard-setting race. Since there is lack of prior research on the search speed and performance in the knowledge domain, we draw upon the market entry studies in the product/market domain as well as organizational learning theory and technology innovation studies. We argue that while fast search has a positive effect on innovation performance under high uncertainty, a negative effect under low uncertainty.

All Sessions in Track C...

Mon: 12:45 – 14:00
Session 173: Proactive Strategies to Manage an Uncertain World
Session 181: Sustaining Innovation
Mon: 15:45 – 17:00
Session 174: The Effect of Environmental Conditions on Organizational Reconfiguration
Session 183: Managing Collective Emotions under Strategic Uncertainty
Mon: 17:15 – 18:30
Session 175: The Influence of Uncertainty on Investment Behaviour of Firms
Session 185: New Forms and Governance Modes for Coping with Uncertainty
Tue: 10:00 – 11:15
Session 176: The Influence of External Uncertainty on Capability Development
Tue: 11:30 – 12:45
Session 177: How to Make the Right Decisions During Uncertain Times?
Tue: 14:30 – 15:45
Session 178: Does the Past Predict Future Exploratory or Exploitative Innovative Behaviour?
Wed: 10:00 – 11:15
Session 179: Environmental Dynamism and Firm Behavior
Session 182: Cognitive Processs under Uncertainty
Wed: 11:30 – 12:45
Session 180: The Dynamics of Top Management Team in Achieving Long Term Performance
Session 184: Value Creation Under Uncertainty

Strategic Management Society

Washington DC