Unrequited: Asymmetry in Interorganizational Trust

Forthcoming, Strategic Organization

24 Pages Posted: 25 Oct 2018

See all articles by Melissa Graebner

Melissa Graebner

University of Texas at Austin - Red McCombs School of Business

Fabrice Lumineau

University of Hong Kong

Darcy Fudge Kamal

California State University, Sacramento - College of Business Administration

Date Written: September 7, 2018

Abstract

Many studies of interorganizational relationships assume that trust between organizations is symmetric. In this essay, we explore the origins of this assumption and examine relevant quantitative and qualitative evidence from the literatures on strategy, marketing, supply chain management and information systems. We conclude that no systematic evidence currently exists to support the assumption that interorganizational trust is typically symmetric. We explore how the possibility of asymmetry complicates interpretation of previous research on the effects of interorganizational trust. We encourage further research to identify conditions under which symmetry is likely, and offer a variety of strategies that scholars may use to deal with potential asymmetry.

Keywords: trust, interorganizational relationships, asymmetry, alliances, buyer-supplier relationships

Suggested Citation

Graebner, Melissa and Lumineau, Fabrice and Fudge Kamal, Darcy, Unrequited: Asymmetry in Interorganizational Trust (September 7, 2018). Forthcoming, Strategic Organization , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3259529

Melissa Graebner

University of Texas at Austin - Red McCombs School of Business ( email )

Austin, TX 78712
United States

Fabrice Lumineau

University of Hong Kong ( email )

HKU Business School
Hong Kong
Hong Kong

Darcy Fudge Kamal (Contact Author)

California State University, Sacramento - College of Business Administration ( email )

School of Business Administration
Sacramento, CA 95819-6081
United States

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