The Cost of Friendship
This paper explores two broad questions on collaboration between individuals. First, we investigate what personal characteristics affect people's desire to work together. Second, given the influence of these personal characteristics, we analyze whether this attraction enhances or detracts from performance. Addressing these problems in the venture capital syndication setting, we show that venture capitalists exhibit strong detrimental homophily in their co-investment decisions. We find that individual venture capitalists choose to collaborate with other venture capitalists for both ability-based characteristics (e.g., whether both individuals in a dyad obtained a degree from a top university) and affinity-based characteristics (e.g., whether individuals in a pair share the same ethnic background, attended the same school, or worked for the same employer previously). Moreover, frequent collaborators in syndication are those venture capitalists who display a high level of mutual affinity. We find that while collaborating for ability-based characteristics enhances investment performance, collaborating for affinity-based characteristics dramatically reduces the probability of investment success. A variety of tests show that the cost of affinity is not driven by selection into inferior deals; the effect is most likely attributable to poor decision-making by high-affinity syndicates post investment. Taken together, our results suggest that non-ability-based "birds-of-a-feather-flock-together" effects in collaboration can be costly.
|Date of creation:||Jun 2012|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
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.:
- Henry Chen & Paul Gompers & Anna Kovner & Josh Lerner, 2010.
"Buy Local? The Geography of Venture Capital,"
in: Cities and Entrepreneurship
National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- William Kerr & William Lincoln, 2010.
"The Supply Side of Innovation: H-1B Visa Reforms and US Ethnic Invention,"
William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series
wp978, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
- William R. Kerr & William F. Lincoln, 2010. "The Supply Side of Innovation: H-1B Visa Reforms and U.S. Ethnic Invention," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(3), pages 473-508, 07.
- William R. Kerr & William F. Lincoln, 2010. "The Supply Side of Innovation: H-1B Visa Reforms and US Ethnic Invention," NBER Working Papers 15768, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- William R. Kerr & William F. Lincoln, 2008. "The Supply Side of Innovation: H-1B Visa Reforms and US Ethnic Invention," Harvard Business School Working Papers 09-005, Harvard Business School.
- Gompers, Paul A., 1996. "Grandstanding in the venture capital industry," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 133-156, September.
- Lauren Cohen & Andrea Frazzini & Christopher Malloy, 2007.
"The Small World of Investing: Board Connections and Mutual Fund Returns,"
NBER Working Papers
13121, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Lauren Cohen & Andrea Frazzini & Christopher Malloy, 2008. "The Small World of Investing: Board Connections and Mutual Fund Returns," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(5), pages 951-979, October.
- Sergio Currarini & Paolo Pin & Matthew O. Jackson, 2007.
"An Economic Model of Friendship: Homophily, Minorities and Segregation,"
2007_20, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".
- Sergio Currarini & Matthew O. Jackson & Paolo Pin, 2009. "An Economic Model of Friendship: Homophily, Minorities, and Segregation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 77(4), pages 1003-1045, 07.
- Yael V. Hochberg & Alexander Ljungqvist & Yang Lu, 2007. "Whom You Know Matters: Venture Capital Networks and Investment Performance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(1), pages 251-301, 02.
- James A. Brander & Raphael Amit & Werner Antweiler, 2002. "Venture-Capital Syndication: Improved Venture Selection vs. The Value-Added Hypothesis," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(3), pages 423-452, 09.
- Xuan Tian, 2011. "The Role of Venture Capital Syndication in Value Creation for Entrepreneurial Firms," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 16(1), pages 245-283.
- Heckman, James, 2013.
"Sample selection bias as a specification error,"
Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
- Gompers, Paul & Kovner, Anna & Lerner, Josh & Scharfstein, David, 2010. "Performance persistence in entrepreneurship," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(1), pages 18-32, April.
- Becker, Gary S, 1973. "A Theory of Marriage: Part I," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(4), pages 813-46, July-Aug..
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18141. 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: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.