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Splitting the pie: rent distribution in alliances and networks


  • Jeffrey H. Dyer

    (Brigham Young University, Provo, UT, USA)

  • Harbir Singh

    (University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA)

  • Prashant Kale

    (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA)


This paper addresses the issue of how relational rents, generated through alliances, are distributed to the participating firms. We argue that rent distribution is influenced by factors affecting both jointly generated common benefits and private benefits gained from the alliance relationship. We draw on four perspectives to explain these various effects. The first three, namely the resource dependence perspective, related resources perspective, and structural holes perspective, essentially highlight the private 'exploitation' opportunities that a firm's alliance network presents the focal firm. In contrast, the resource development perspective underscores the private 'exploration' benefits a firm potentially derives from its alliance network. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeffrey H. Dyer & Harbir Singh & Prashant Kale, 2008. "Splitting the pie: rent distribution in alliances and networks," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(2-3), pages 137-148.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:mgtdec:v:29:y:2008:i:2-3:p:137-148
    DOI: 10.1002/mde.1391

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Asanuma, Banri, 1989. "Manufacturer-supplier relationships in Japan and the concept of relation-specific skill," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 1-30, March.
    2. 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.
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    Cited by:

    1. Najda-Janoszka, Marta, 2015. "Problem zatrzymywania wartości przez MŚP – studium przypadku działalności podwykonawczej
      [Value appropriation by SMEs – a case study of subcontracting]
      ," MPRA Paper 67943, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. repec:eee:touman:v:52:y:2016:i:c:p:380-394 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Contractor, Farok J. & Woodley, James A., 2015. "How the alliance pie is split: Value appropriation by each partner in cross-border technology transfer alliances," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 535-547.
    4. Patrycja Klimas, 2016. "Social relationships of both managers and creative workers in the context of value creation (Relacje spoleczne kadry zarzadzajacej oraz pracownikow kreatywnych w kontekscie tworzenia wartosci)," Problemy Zarzadzania, University of Warsaw, Faculty of Management, vol. 14(64), pages 80-97.
    5. Francis Bidault & Thomas Hildebrand, 2012. "The distribution of partnerships benefits: Evidence from co-authorships in economics journals," ESMT Research Working Papers ESMT-12-08, ESMT European School of Management and Technology.
    6. Tom Broekel & Matthias Brachert, 2015. "The structure and evolution of inter-sectoral technological complementarity in R&D in Germany from 1990 to 2011," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 25(4), pages 755-785, September.
    7. Anja Schmidt, 2009. "Relational View," Metrika: International Journal for Theoretical and Applied Statistics, Springer, vol. 20(1), pages 129-137, May.
    8. Umit Ozmel & Isin Guler, 2015. "Small fish, big fish: The performance effects of the relative standing in partners' affiliate portfolios," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(13), pages 2039-2057, December.
    9. Erden, Zeynep & Klang, David & Sydler, Renato & von Krogh, Georg, 2014. "Knowledge-flows and firm performance," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 2777-2785.
    10. Zhang, Si & Li, Na & Li, Jizhen, 2017. "Redefining relational rent," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 315-326.
    11. Müller, Dirk, 2010. "Alliance Coordination, Dysfunctions, and the Protection of Idiosyncratic Knowledge in Strategic Learning Alliances," EconStor Preprints 41039, ZBW - German National Library of Economics.

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