The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

How does Guanxi shape entrepreneurial behaviour? The case of family businesses in China

How does Guanxi shape entrepreneurial behaviour? The case of family businesses in China
How does Guanxi shape entrepreneurial behaviour? The case of family businesses in China
This paper explores how Guanxi shapes different levels of entrepreneurial behaviour of family businesses in China. Extant research draws on network theory, suggesting that firms focusing on less intimate social relationships are more entrepreneurial than those focusing on intimate social networks. However, this notion of networks neglects Guanxi’s indigenous cultural roots that promote intimacy in social relationships, thus limiting our understanding of why some firms in China demonstrate a higher level of entrepreneurial behaviour than others. Through an in-depth multi-case study analysis of eight family firms in China, we find that Guanxi is a multi-dimensional concept that can only be effective through intimate relationship building. This study contributes to the social network literature on entrepreneurial behaviour by incorporating the gift exchange theoretical perspective and demonstrating that political Guanxi in China can only facilitate entrepreneurial behaviour when it is built around a significant level of intimacy. We also contribute to the family business research by demonstrating that family ties are multi-dimensional. Different cultural values may inform different dimensions of family ties via differences in family business governance structures which can give rise to different levels of entrepreneurial outcomes. This study offers theoretical and practical implications alongside avenues for future research.
Social network theory, gift exchange, family business, entrepreneurial behaviour, Guanxi, qualitative, China
1045-3172
Costanzo, Laura A.
bce28c22-8b70-4176-b523-4e2f59169baf
Costanzo, Laura A.
bce28c22-8b70-4176-b523-4e2f59169baf

Costanzo, Laura A. (2022) How does Guanxi shape entrepreneurial behaviour? The case of family businesses in China. British Journal of Management, [17552169]. (In Press)

Record type: Article

Abstract

This paper explores how Guanxi shapes different levels of entrepreneurial behaviour of family businesses in China. Extant research draws on network theory, suggesting that firms focusing on less intimate social relationships are more entrepreneurial than those focusing on intimate social networks. However, this notion of networks neglects Guanxi’s indigenous cultural roots that promote intimacy in social relationships, thus limiting our understanding of why some firms in China demonstrate a higher level of entrepreneurial behaviour than others. Through an in-depth multi-case study analysis of eight family firms in China, we find that Guanxi is a multi-dimensional concept that can only be effective through intimate relationship building. This study contributes to the social network literature on entrepreneurial behaviour by incorporating the gift exchange theoretical perspective and demonstrating that political Guanxi in China can only facilitate entrepreneurial behaviour when it is built around a significant level of intimacy. We also contribute to the family business research by demonstrating that family ties are multi-dimensional. Different cultural values may inform different dimensions of family ties via differences in family business governance structures which can give rise to different levels of entrepreneurial outcomes. This study offers theoretical and practical implications alongside avenues for future research.

Text
Final Tables and Figures - Accepted Manuscript
Restricted to Repository staff only until 3 October 2024.
Request a copy
Text
BJM final manuscript - Accepted Manuscript
Restricted to Repository staff only until 3 October 2024.
Request a copy
Text
BJM_paper_title._bios - Other
Download (18kB)

More information

Accepted/In Press date: 3 October 2022
Keywords: Social network theory, gift exchange, family business, entrepreneurial behaviour, Guanxi, qualitative, China

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 471367
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/471367
ISSN: 1045-3172
PURE UUID: ddc0c94a-0fc7-4db3-a4ff-8a21b57bf53b
ORCID for Laura A. Costanzo: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-7197-6778

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 04 Nov 2022 17:34
Last modified: 05 Nov 2022 02:46

Export record

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×