Living Up to Expectations: Corporate Reputation and Sustainable Competitive Advantage
16 Pages Posted: 8 Nov 2012
Date Written: November 2012
I develop a theory of corporate reputation as a source of sustainable competitive advantage. I show how a relatively simple and reasonable assumption regarding the dynamics of corporate reputation leads to a self-reinforcing process whereby cross-firm differences in corporate reputation (and performance) are significant and relatively permanent. Numerical simulations suggest that persistence in cross-firm differences is largely due to endogenous investment incentives: firms with higher corporate reputation invest more in corporate reputation. I provide a series of examples consistent with the model's prediction.
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