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Personal Networking in Russia and China:: Blat and Guanxi

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  • Michailova, Snejina
  • Worm, Verner
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    Abstract

    Blat and guanxi are terms describing personal networks in Russia and China respectively. They have existed and been practiced for centuries and remain highly relevant today. By employing a social network perspective, we analyse the architecture of blat and guanxi and some of the similarities between them. We also argue that personal networks in Russia and China are products of specific cultural heritages and as such have their own particular configurations and characteristics. Following a dynamic perspective, we examine how blat and guanxi have evolved over time: while they were similar in a number of dimensions during the command economy period, there are interesting signs of increasing differentiation in the post-command decade. The paper outlines important insights for Western managers and expatriates in terms of surviving in and effectively using blat and guanxi.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Management Journal.

    Volume (Year): 21 (2003)
    Issue (Month): 4 (August)
    Pages: 509-519

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:eurman:v:21:y:2003:i:4:p:509-519

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    Keywords: Russia China Personal networking Blat Guanxi Differences and Similarities between Blat and Guanxi Command economy Market economy;

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    Cited by:
    1. Bruno Grancelli, 2012. "Bastions Of Irrational Conservatism? Shop-Floor Accounts And The Co-Evolution Of Organizational And Institutional Change In Russia," Organizations and Markets in Emerging Economies, Faculty of Economics, Vilnius University, vol. 3(2).
    2. Xiaohua Yang & Elly Ho & Artemis Chang, 2012. "Integrating the resource-based view and transaction cost economics in immigrant business performance," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 29(3), pages 753-772, September.
    3. Sheila Puffer & Daniel McCarthy & Alfred Jaeger & Denise Dunlap, 2013. "The use of favors by emerging market managers: Facilitator or inhibitor of international expansion?," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 30(2), pages 327-349, June.
    4. Galina Shirokova & Patricia McDougall-Covin, 2012. "The role of social networks and institutions in the internationalization of Russian entrepreneurial firms: Do they matter?," Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Springer, vol. 10(3), pages 177-199, September.
    5. Chikweche, Tendai & Fletcher, Richard, 2010. "Understanding factors that influence purchases in subsistence markets," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 63(6), pages 643-650, June.
    6. Lau, Chung Ming & Bruton, Garry D., 2011. "Strategic orientations and strategies of high technology ventures in two transition economies," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 371-380, July.
    7. Collings, David G. & Scullion, Hugh & Morley, Michael J., 2007. "Changing patterns of global staffing in the multinational enterprise: Challenges to the conventional expatriate assignment and emerging alternatives," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 198-213, June.
    8. Snejina Michailova & Elena Sidorova, 2010. "Knowledge Management In Transition Economies: Selected Key Issues And Possible Research Avenues," Organizations and Markets in Emerging Economies, Faculty of Economics, Vilnius University, vol. 1(1).
    9. Abosag, Ibrahim & Lee, Joong-Woo, 2013. "The formation of trust and commitment in business relationships in the Middle East: Understanding Et-Moone relationships," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 602-614.
    10. Olwen Bedford, 2011. "Guanxi-Building in the Workplace: A Dynamic Process Model of Working and Backdoor Guanxi," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 104(1), pages 149-158, November.
    11. Anna Alon & Amy Hageman, 2013. "The Impact of Corruption on Firm Tax Compliance in Transition Economies: Whom Do You Trust?," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 116(3), pages 479-494, September.
    12. Daniel McCarthy & Sheila Puffer & Denise Dunlap & Alfred Jaeger, 2012. "A Stakeholder Approach to the Ethicality of BRIC-firm Managers’ Use of Favors," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 109(1), pages 27-38, August.
    13. Arnold Schuh, 2010. "How research on marketing in Central and Eastern Europe can advance international marketing theory," Tržište/Market, Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb, vol. 22(2), pages 255-268.
    14. Yannick Thams & Ying Liu & Mary Glinow, 2013. "Asian favors: More than a cookie cutter approach," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 30(2), pages 461-486, June.
    15. Johnson, Karen L. & Duxbury, Linda, 2010. "The view from the field: A case study of the expatriate boundary-spanning role," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 29-40, January.
    16. Wen-Bao Lin, 2013. "Research on knowledge sharing and interpersonal relationships: empirical study of family firms and non-family firms," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 47(1), pages 151-166, January.

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