Do strategic marketing and social capital really matter in regional clusters? Lessons from an emerging economy of Latin America
This research explores the relationship between geographic proximity and the building of social capital and inter-firm cooperation in strategic marketing. By emphasizing social interactions and the building of social capital, we extend the research on industry clusters beyond traditional economic perspectives and factors motivating cooperation between firms. The empirical study is based on a survey of 90 senior managers from three natural resources-based industries (two non-clustered and one clustered) in Chile. The results show that managers in clustered versus non-clustered industries differ in terms of the perceived value of location, the perceived value of building social capital, their involvement in activities that build social capital, their attitudes toward cooperative marketing, their history of involvement in cooperative marketing activities, and their intentions for engaging in cooperative marketing activities in the future. Trade associations in clustered versus non-clustered industries play different roles in regard to creating social capital. The article concludes by discussing the implications of these findings for researchers, managers and policy makers.
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