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Explaining and Predicting the Choice of Organizational Form: Integrating Performance Ambiguity and Asset Specificity Effects

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  • Mahoney, Joseph T.

    (U of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

  • McNally, Regina C.

    (Michigan State U)

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    Abstract

    Organization theory suggests that various forms of performance ambiguity have governance implications for the strategic choice of control mechanism in organizational forms (e.g., Eisenhardt, 1985; Ouchi, 1979). Transaction costs theory emphasizes asset specificity as an important predictor of organizational form (e.g., Williamson, 1996). The current paper provides a new synthesis of performance ambiguity and asset specificity to better explain and predict the conditions under which various control mechanisms are more cost efficient.

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    File URL: http://www.business.illinois.edu/Working_Papers/papers/04-0109.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, College of Business in its series Working Papers with number 04-0109.

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    Date of creation: 2004
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:ecl:illbus:04-0109

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    Web page: http://www.business.uiuc.edu/Working_Papers/Main.asp
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    1. Laura Poppo, 1995. "Influence Activities and Strategic Coordination: Two Distinctions of Internal and External Markets," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 41(12), pages 1845-1859, December.
    2. Oliver Hart & Sanford Grossman, 1985. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Working papers 372, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    3. Alchian, Armen A & Demsetz, Harold, 1972. "Production , Information Costs, and Economic Organization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(5), pages 777-95, December.
    4. Anderson, Erin, 1988. "Transaction costs as determinants of opportunism in integrated and independent sales forces," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 247-264, April.
    5. William G. Ouchi, 1979. "A Conceptual Framework for the Design of Organizational Control Mechanisms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 25(9), pages 833-848, September.
    6. Paul L. Robertson & Richard N. Langlois, 1994. "Innovation, Networks, and Vertical Integration," Industrial Organization 9406006, EconWPA.
    7. John, George & Weitz, Barton A, 1988. "Forward Integration into Distribution: An Empirical Test of Transaction Cost Analysis," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 4(2), pages 337-55, Fall.
    8. Klein, Benjamin & Crawford, Robert G & Alchian, Armen A, 1978. "Vertical Integration, Appropriable Rents, and the Competitive Contracting Process," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(2), pages 297-326, October.
    9. Shelanski, Howard A & Klein, Peter G, 1995. "Empirical Research in Transaction Cost Economics: A Review and Assessment," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(2), pages 335-61, October.
    10. Riordan, Michael H. & Williamson, Oliver E., 1985. "Asset specificity and economic organization," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 365-378, December.
    11. Oxley, Joanne E., 1999. "Institutional environment and the mechanisms of governance: the impact of intellectual property protection on the structure of inter-firm alliances," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 283-309, March.
    12. Masten, Scott E & Meehan, James W, Jr & Snyder, Edward A, 1991. "The Costs of Organization," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(1), pages 1-25, Spring.
    13. Nooteboom, B. & Berger, H. & Noorderhaven, N.G., 1997. "Effects of trust and governance on relational risk," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-73834, Tilburg University.
    14. Levy, David T, 1985. "The Transactions Cost Approach to Vertical Integration: An Empirical Examination," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 67(3), pages 438-45, August.
    15. Demsetz, Harold, 1988. "The Theory of the Firm Revisited," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 4(1), pages 141-61, Spring.
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    Cited by:
    1. Franken, Jason R.V. & Pennings, Joost M.E. & Garcia, Philip, 2009. "Do Transaction Costs and Risk Preferences Influence Marketing Arrangements in the Illinois Hog Industry?," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 34(2), August.

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