Building trust in cross-sector R&D collaborations : the role of credible commitments

Couchman, Paul K. and Fulop, Liz 2006, Building trust in cross-sector R&D collaborations : the role of credible commitments, in EGOS 2006 : The organizing society. : Proceedings of the 22nd European Group for Organizational Studies Colloquium, Bergen, Norway, 6 - 8 July, European Group for Organizational Studies, [Berlin, Germany].

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Title Building trust in cross-sector R&D collaborations : the role of credible commitments
Author(s) Couchman, Paul K.
Fulop, Liz
Conference name European Group for Organizational Studies. Colloquium (22th : 2006 : Bergen, Norway)
Conference location Bergen, Norway
Conference dates 6-8 Jul. 2006
Title of proceedings EGOS 2006 : The organizing society. : Proceedings of the 22nd European Group for Organizational Studies Colloquium, Bergen, Norway, 6 - 8 July
Editor(s) [Unknown]
Publication date 2006
Conference series European Group for Organizational Studies Colloquium
Publisher European Group for Organizational Studies
Place of publication [Berlin, Germany]
Summary This paper reports selected findings from a study of one form of cross-boundary relationship: cross-sector R&D collaboration under the Australian Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) Programme. The study sought to explain project partners’ collaboration experience using a theoretical model which was empirically tested with a survey of CRC project leaders. It was hypothesised (H1) that the higher the level of relational trust (measured, following Sako, in terms of contractual, competence, and goodwill trust) amongst the partners in a collaborative project team, the more positive would be the partners’ experience of the project. The construct of credible commitments (the making of pledges, or the economic equivalent of the taking of hostages, which bind partners to a relationship) was posed in the model as an antecedent of relational trust. Accordingly it was hypothesised (H2) that the more that credible commitments are made by the project partners, the higher would be the level of relational trust between them. Data from the achieved sample (n = 156, 51% response rate) were analysed using PLS Graph. The results of the analysis provided support for hypothesis 1 but not for hypothesis 2. It was concluded that this latter finding could be due to the specific context of the study (cross-sector R&D collaborations under the CRC Programme differ markedly from inter-firm strategic alliances), or it could be due to the complex nature of credible commitments which was not adequately captured by our measure of this construct. Further research is required in this area to clarify the nature credible commitments, and the circumstances under which they contribute to a spiral of rising trust, in different cross-boundary contexts.
Language eng
Field of Research 150399 Business and Management not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970115 Expanding Knowledge in Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
HERDC Research category E1.1 Full written paper - refereed
Copyright notice ©2006, EGOS
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30034928

Document type: Conference Paper
Collection: School of Management and Marketing
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