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The Network Infrastructure: "A Case Study on Third Party in the Process of Networking"
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This thesis increases the understanding of networking and especially the role of third parties in the network infrastructure. That networking is an important activity that plays a central role for companies’ success is common sense in today’s highly changing environment. However, the role of third parties operating within the networking infrastructure has only been research sparingly. As the author’s literature review showed even though we have knowledge about the network process and attributes of the different actors there is still a lack of theories to explaining them. For instance, it is still unknown how the third party can successfully bridge structural holes and how its specific characteristics influence the network. Furthermore, it is unclear how this is affecting the people and consequently the companies involved in the network.

The empirical focus of this thesis is on the Swedish Chamber of Commerce in the Netherlands and the empirical study consists of a qualitative case study. Data is collected through documents, participant observations and qualitative interviews in the Netherlands. The research shows that the third party has succeeded in provide a business and social platform that facilitate the process of combination and exchange of intellectual capital and this creates business opportunities for the members of the network. The study contributes to the research about the third party in the network infrastructure by identifying three success processes how the third party can contribute to the business network and this are: firstly, in combining and exchanging knowledge through a well-developed network structure. Secondly, through creating anticipation and motivation between the members for sharing of knowledge and thirdly, when bridging the gap between different actors with various kinds of knowledge. The thesis also provides suggestions for how the third party can improve their work to create and deepen relationship within networking.

As the thesis demonstrates the role of the third party in a network and as more business is done within networks and with the help of a third party, it also has practical implications. In particular, the study is beneficial for the Swedish Chamber of Commerce, but also for other third party organizations that aim to improve their role in the networking process.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 81 p.
Keyword [en]
Networking, Social capital, Intellectual capital, Third party, Network infrastructure
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-45071OAI: diva2:425278
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2011-06-21 Created: 2011-06-21 Last updated: 2011-06-21Bibliographically approved

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