Management Control for Market Transactions: The Relation Between Transaction Characteristics, Incomplete Contract Design, and Subsequent Performance
Using an unusually comprehensive database on 858 transactions for information technology products and accompanying services, we study how close partners who are exposed to opportunistic hazards structure and control a significant transaction. We analyze data on the terms of contracting to determine whether transaction and supplier characteristics that generate opportunistic hazards are related to the formal management control structure. We also examine whether misalignment between transaction and supplier characteristics and the control structure is associated with ex post performance problems. Characteristics associated with hazards are found to be positively related to contract extensiveness. Factor analysis of the use of 24 contract terms reveals four groups of contract terms that are commonly used in combination. We interpret these factors as "dimensions of management control" and label them: assignment of rights, product and price, after-sales service, and legal recourse. Characteristics associated with hazards are positively related to the use of all four dimensions of management control, with different hazards associated with different controls. We then examine the relation between transaction characteristics and ex post transaction problems, demonstrating that even in the presence of mutually agreeable contracts, hazards remain. We conclude that costs of contracting are associated with increased use of contract terms on assignment of rights, after-sales service, and legal recourse. Finally, we present evidence that management control structures that are better aligned with transaction hazards mitigate subsequent performance problems, though at a nontrivial cost of contracting.
Volume (Year): 51 (2005)
Issue (Month): 12 (December)
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 7240 Parkway Drive, Suite 300, Hanover, MD 21076 USA|
Web page: http://www.informs.org/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- 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.
- Laurie J. Kirsch & V. Sambamurthy & Dong-Gil Ko & Russell L. Purvis, 2002. "Controlling Information Systems Development Projects: The View from the Client," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 48(4), pages 484-498, April.
- Gregory Vistnes, 1994. "An Empirical Investigation of Procurement Contract Structures," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 25(2), pages 215-241, Summer.
- Eric T. G. Wang & Terry Barron & Abraham Seidmann, 1997. "Contracting Structures for Custom Software Development: The Impacts of Informational Rents and Uncertainty on Internal Development and Outsourcing," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 43(12), pages 1726-1744, December.
- Stanley Baiman & Paul E. Fischer & Madhav V. Rajan, 2001. "Performance Measurement and Design in Supply Chains," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 47(1), pages 173-188, January.
- W. Coles, Jerilyn & Hesterly, William S., 1998. "The impact of firm-specific assets and the interaction of uncertainty: an examination of make or buy decisions in public and private hospitals," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 383-409, August.
- Keith J. Crocker & Scott E. Masten, 1988. "Mitigating Contractual Hazards: Unilateral Options and Contract Length," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(3), pages 327-343, Autumn.
- Baiman, Stanley & Rajan, Madhav V., 2002. "Incentive issues in inter-firm relationships," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 213-238, April.
- Brickley, James A, 1999. "Incentive Conflicts and Contractual Restraints: Evidence from Franchising," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 42(2), pages 745-74, October.
- Jean Tirole, 1999. "Incomplete Contracts: Where Do We Stand?," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(4), pages 741-782, July.
- Hopwood, Anthony G., 1996. "Looking across rather than up and down: On the need to explore the lateral processing of information," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 21(6), pages 589-590, August.
- Joskow, Paul L, 1987. "Contract Duration and Relationship-Specific Investments: Empirical Evidence from Coal Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(1), pages 168-185, March.
- Francine Lafontaine & Kathryn L. Shaw, 1996.
"The Dynamics of Franchise Contracting: Evidence from Panel Data,"
NBER Working Papers
5585, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Francine Lafontaine & Kathryn L. Shaw, 1999. "The Dynamics of Franchise Contracting: Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(5), pages 1041-1080, October.
- Dye, Ronald A, 1985. "Costly Contract Contingencies," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 26(1), pages 233-50, February.
- Melumad, Nahum & Mookherjee, Dilip & Reichelstein, Stefan, 1992. "A theory of responsibility centers," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 445-484, December.
- Dekker, Henri C., 2004. "Control of inter-organizational relationships: evidence on appropriation concerns and coordination requirements," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 27-49, January.
- Anderson, Shannon W. & Glenn, David & Sedatole, Karen L., 2000. "Sourcing parts of complex products: evidence on transactions costs, high-powered incentives and ex-post opportunism," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 25(8), pages 723-749, November.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:51:y:2005:i:12:p:1734-1752. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mirko Janc)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.