An Empirical Test of the Internal Tensions Perspective of Strategic Alliances
In: Das, T.K. (Ed.), 2011. Research in Strategic Alliances Series: Behavioral Perspectives on Strategic Alliances, pp. 157-174. Information Age Publishing: Charlotte, NC.
30 Pages Posted: 11 Apr 2012 Last revised: 14 Jun 2014
Date Written: April 11, 2012
The internal tensions perspective of alliances is rooted in the dialectic process theory that views relations as collisions of contradictory ideas that compete for domination: the interaction of these competing ideas being aimed at unity or wholeness. However, alliances are at the outset a union, rather than opposition, focusing on a cooperation project, which outcome is expected to benefit alliance partners. Thus, a dialectic can be viewed, on one hand, as contradicting ideas of diverse groups over goals (external tensions), and on the other hand, contradicting ideas within a loosely-coupled group (alliance) over how to reach a mutually agreed goal (internal tensions). A Cox regression model was specified on 1335 minor and major alliances (airline industry) to test the internal tensions perspective of alliances. The model results show that: 1) alliances having a dominant partner (cooperation versus competition tension) have higher risk of termination; 2) alliances having minority equity (rigidity versus flexibility tension) have lower risk of terminations; and 3) as alliance cooperation features increase (short-term versus long-term tension) risk of termination decreases. Thus, according to our study all three internal tensions of alliances, suggested in the internal tensions perspective enhance our understanding of alliance terminations.
Keywords: Internal tensions perspective, strategic alliances, dialectic process theory, Cox regression, airlines
JEL Classification: L00, L93, C41
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation