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Coopetition in Industry Associations: A Study of Scandinavian Outdoor Group
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
2018 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Coopetition - the simultaneous pursuit of cooperation and competition, is a paradoxical situation where the pooling of resources has the potential to create greater advantages compared to if the involved actors solely compete. Previous research shows that coopetition is a difficult strategy to pursue due to the tensions arising from the paradox. In this study, coopetitive relationships within an industry association is studied. The focal context is the Scandinavian Outdoor Group (SOG), which facilitates cooperative activities between competitors, mainly concerning export and sustainability. The main purpose of this thesis is to gain a deeper understanding of how industry associations affect the coopetitve relationships within it. Furthermore, we aim to investigate how the tensions stemming from the paradox are managed.

 

We could identify a research gap, since no coopetition scholars have up to this date explored the third party role in facilitating cooperation and nonetheless industry associations. Furthermore, previous research on coopetition has mainly focused on high-tech industries, where the cooperation mainly occurs far from the customer, hence there is a need to conduct research in contexts with oppositional characteristics.  

 

In order to fulfil the purpose of this thesis, a qualitative study was conducted. The qualitative study consists of eight semi-structured interviews, six of which were with senior managers from member firms and two with people possessing key functions in SOG. Through the interviews, a deeper understanding of the industry association’s role in facilitating cooperation between competitors was gained. Further, a more profound knowledge of the member firms views on being part of an industry association and cooperating with competitors was attained through the interviews. From our empirical data as well as previous theories presented in the theoretical framework, we derived three main themes in which we present our main findings.

 

From our findings, we conclude that SOG has a salient role in facilitating cooperation between competitors. It affects the coopetitive relationships through activities where personal bonds are built and trust is created, which also leads to deeper cooperation outside the boundaries of SOG. Further, we found the member firms to already be positive towards cooperating with competitors before entering SOG, but that the view had been strengthened since then. Mainly positively dominated low tensions were found, which partly derive from the cooperation dominated paradox, but factors as industry characteristics, culture and voluntary engagement seem to play their role. Previous research claims that positively dominated low tensions expose firms to opportunistic behaviour, whereas in this case, the high level of trust was found to function as a substitute.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018.
Keywords [en]
Coopetition, industry associations, tensions, balancing, third party role, network, co-branding, sustainability
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-149820OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-149820DiVA, id: diva2:1228012
External cooperation
anonym
Educational program
Study Programme in Business Administration and Economics
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2018-06-27 Created: 2018-06-27 Last updated: 2018-06-27Bibliographically approved

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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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  • Other style
More styles
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  • de-DE
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  • en-US
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  • nn-NB
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  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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