Microfoundations of Partnerships: Exploring the Role of Employees in Trickle Effects

16 Pages Posted: 2 Aug 2013 Last revised: 9 Aug 2017

See all articles by Ans Kolk

Ans Kolk

University of Amsterdam Business School

Marlene Vock

University of Amsterdam - Business School

Willemijn van Dolen

University of Amsterdam Business School

Date Written: August 1, 2013

Abstract

The growing body of literature on partnerships has paid most attention to their implications at the macro level, for society, as well as the meso level, for the partnering organizations. While generating many valuable insights, what has remained underexposed is the micro level, i.e. the role of managers and employees in partnerships, and how their actions and interactions can have an effect on the spread and potential effectiveness of collaborative efforts. This article uses a case-study approach to empirically explore the patterns and potential boundary conditions of so-called ‘trickle effects’ of partnerships among individual actors within and outside partnering companies, which have thus far only been proposed conceptually. Based on interviews with employees from three different companies, we found evidence of trickle-down and trickle-up effects with higher and lower management, as well as trickle-round effects with colleagues, family, friends and customers. The article discusses several partnership characteristics that seem to play a role, and notes implications for research and practice.

Keywords: Partnerships, corporate social responsibility, employees, trickle effects, micro-level interactions, diffusion mechanisms, micro-foundations

JEL Classification: D21, J28, L20, L31, M12, M14, M39, M54

Suggested Citation

Kolk, Ans and Vock, Marlene and Dolen, Willemijn van, Microfoundations of Partnerships: Exploring the Role of Employees in Trickle Effects (August 1, 2013). Journal of Business Ethics, 135(1), pp. 19-34, 2016, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2304890

Ans Kolk (Contact Author)

University of Amsterdam Business School ( email )

Plantage Muidergracht 12
Amsterdam, 1018 TV
Netherlands
+31 20 525 4289 (Phone)
+31 20 525 5281 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.anskolk.eu

Marlene Vock

University of Amsterdam - Business School ( email )

Roetersstraat 18
Amsterdam, 1018WB
Netherlands

Willemijn van Dolen

University of Amsterdam Business School ( email )

Amsterdam
Netherlands

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