MOR Abstracts

MOR 17.3 Abstracts

The Failure of Hybrid Organizations: A Legitimation Perspective
Juliana Siwale, Jonathan Kimmitt, Joseph Amankwah-Amoah

Organizational hybridity refers to the combination of multiple institutional logics and identities that, within an organizational setting, do not conventionally complement one another. In such conditions, organizations must develop strategies to combine logics and sustain their hybrid forms. Success, however, is not inevitable. In this article, we take a legitimacy-as-process perspective to focus on a failed Microfinance Organization (MFO) in the African context of Zambia. MFOs represent a fascinating context because of their hybrid nature and need to balance several competing institutional demands. We utilise field interviews to analyse the process through which MFOs fail, analysing actor legitimation responses to emerging hybridity demands. We identify three phases associated with these changes: 1) dependent coupling, (2) misaligning legitimation, and (3) circumnavigating over conformity. Our findings emphasise that legitimation efforts in a failed hybrid are not simply the reverse of those that succeed. We observe adaptive processes consistent with successful hybrids but that ultimately sow the seeds of eventual failure. This demonstrates the need to re-think the role of legitimation strategies in hybrids alongside their potential deleterious consequences.
KEYWORDS failure, hybrid organizations, institutional complexity, legitimation, microfinance

Unraveling the Philosophical Foundations of Co-opetition Strategy
Giovanni Battista Dagnino, Anna Minà

This article aims to understand how Eastern and Western philosophies shape the perspectives of scholars and practitioners in framing co-opetition (i.e., the coexistence of competition and cooperation) in distinctive manners and, in turn, how such distinctions shape the behavioral patterns of co-opetition. We disentangle the constructs of competition and cooperation and their coexistence as proposed by three Chinese schools of thought (i.e., Taoism, Confucianism, and Legalism) and three Western philosophers (i.e., Immanuel Kant, Georg W. F. Hegel, and Adam Smith). Based on this groundwork, we unveil four comparative philosophical logics used to address the essence of co-opetition (i.e., either/or, both/and, both/or, and either/and). In addition, we apply such East-meeting-West linkages to a typology of co-opetition strategies.
KEYWORDS co-opetition strategy, deliberate and emergent strategy, Eastern and Western philosophies, implicit, explicit, and induced strategy, yin-yang balancing frame

The Danger of Blindly Following: Examining the Relationship Between Authoritarian Leadership and Unethical Pro-organizational Behaviors
Fangzhou Liu, Jian Liang, Mo Chen

Researchers have paid much attention to the performance implications of authoritarian leadership. However, less effort has been devoted to exploring its ethical consequences at work. Drawing on the social cognitive theory of morality, this study explores the indirect relationship between authoritarian leadership and subordinates’ unethical pro-organizational behaviors (UPB) via displacement of responsibility. A vignette-based experimental study (Study 1) and a time-lagged field study (Study 2) were conducted to test our hypotheses. Consistent findings were accumulated for the indirect relationship between authoritarian leadership and UPB through displacement of responsibility (both Study 1 and 2). Furthermore, this indirect relationship was stronger among employees with low level of moral efficacy (Study 2). We conclude this study by discussing the theoretical and practical implications of these findings.
KEYWORDS authoritarian leadership, displacement of responsibility, moral efficacy, unethical pro-organizational behaviors

The Micro-Foundation of Ambidextrous Foreign Direct Investment
Xinli Huang, Di Fan, Xiaoming He, Yiyi Su

Pursuing ambidextrous foreign direct investment (FDI) has been suggested as a desirable strategic choice of emerging economy (EE) firms in their internationalization. Yet, reconciling explorative and exploitative activities overseas is complicated due to their conflicting and tensional nature. This study explores why some EE firms can achieve high levels of ambidextrous FDI while others cannot. Drawing on upper echelons theory, we propose a micro-foundation perspective of ambidextrous FDI by studying top management teams’ (TMTs) attributes. Applying a configurational approach to a sample of 294 EE firms’ FDI observations (of which 43 are ambidextrous FDI in nature) from 2011 to 2015, we not only confirm the equal importance of both TMT incentive and cognitive factors as causal conditions to achieve a high degree of ambidextrous FDI, but also provide original evidence on the interactive configurations of those factors that lead to ambidextrous FDI.
KEYWORDS ambidextrous FDI, emerging economy (EE) firms, fuzzy-set qualitative, comparative analysis (fsQCA), micro-foundation

Following the Old Road: Organizational Imprinting and the Regional Development of Russia
Nooa Nykänen

In this article, I draw from organizational imprinting theory to illuminate the impact of the Soviet legacy on contemporary Russian economic geography and regional policy. I argue that central coordination in the creation and regulation of Russian urban agglomerations is connected to a socialist imprinted paradigm associated with the Soviet economic regionalization model and territorial-production complexes (TPCs). I conduct a qualitative historical study to analyze the role of the foundational environment and the dynamics in the development of this imprint. I propose that this imprint effect is prone to reproduction in contemporary regional development strategies and community-based paradigms due to exaptation and cultural-cognitive persistence. The article extends the literature of socialist imprinting by demonstrating how imprints may emerge, transform, and affect localized organizational communities in transition economies and highlights the role of imprinted paradigms in policymaking and regional development.
KEYWORDS economic geography, organizational collectives, Russia, socialist imprinting, Soviet Union, technological paradigm