Theorizing on Arab Family Business

Palaiologos, G. T. (2017). Theorising on Arab Family Businesses.

31 Pages Posted: 13 Mar 2018

Date Written: May 31, 2017


The article identifies the distinct characteristics of family businesses in the Arab World and argues that management practice of Arab Family Businesses(AFB) differs significantly from previous testaments of international family business practices. It is also explained that constructs like Namus, Wasta, Diwan, and Asabiyya are vital to distinguish between the international understanding of Family Businesses and Arab Family Businesses.

The differentiating factors of Arab clans are precisely the ones that provide competitive advantages and security from competitive pressures. Concepts of knowledge reservoir, social networking, emotional and symbolic capital have a significant influence on family business practice in the Arab world. The main contribution of this article is to develop propositions as a way to both simplify and clarify the key constructs(Namus, Wasta, Diwan & Asabiyyah) in a middle range theory(Arab family business) with the approach of modeling-as-theorizing and to define Arab Family Business.

Keywords: Family Business; Arab Culture; Networking; Namus; Wasta; Diwan; Asabiyyah

JEL Classification: L22, L26

Suggested Citation

Palaiologos, Georgios, Theorizing on Arab Family Business (May 31, 2017). Palaiologos, G. T. (2017). Theorising on Arab Family Businesses., Available at SSRN:

Georgios Palaiologos (Contact Author)

Royal University for Women ( email )

West Riffa
Riffa, Bahrain


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