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A theoretical framework of alliance performance: The role of trust, social capital and knowledge development

  • Yuliani Suseno (a1) and Vanessa Ratten (a2)

While studies on alliances have been substantial in the international business literature, much is still unexplored in understanding what alliance performance really is and how superior alliance performance is facilitated (Das & Teng 2003). Drawing from research on alliances, we develop a theoretical framework to examine alliance performance by integrating a partner analysis approach, focusing on alliance trust, alliance partners' social capital, and knowledge development from alliance relationships. We consider the level of mutual trust between alliance partners to be the precursor to such relationship (Das & Teng 1998). Trust, we argue, subsequently builds and enhances the partners' social capital. Two types of social capital are considered in this article: internal social capital and external social capital. In developing our framework, we further subscribe to the notion that knowledge is a contributing factor to superior alliance performance, and consider how such relationships influence the development of partners' knowledge in terms of the development in the tacit firm-specific and the more explicit market-specific knowledge. Key managerial implications and suggestions for future research are discussed.

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