Fellow-townsmenship as the mechanism for exploring and exploiting business opportunities: A longitudinal reflection of the nineteenth century Ningbo entrepreneurs in Shanghai

Martin J. Liu, Jimmy Huang, Alain Yee-loong Chong, Zhengzhi GUAN, Natalia Yannopoulou

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This research examines how fellow-townsmenship, a distinctive homophilous social network, functioned among Ningbo entrepreneurs pertaining to their simultaneous exploration and exploitation of business opportunities, or achieving ambidexterity, in the nineteenth century. By investigating data in relevant historical records from museums, archives and libraries, case studies based on two representative Ningbo entrepreneurs from a distinctive business family showcase how those entrepreneurs took advantage of townsmenship to resolve the trade-off between exploration and exploitation. In doing so, simultaneous exploration and exploitation alongside the expansion of fellow townsmenship proved to be effective and successful. This research provides new grounds to examine ambidexterity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)773-799
Number of pages27
JournalBusiness History
Volume57
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 18 Aug 2015

Keywords

  • ambidexterity
  • entrepreneurship, fellow-townsmenship
  • social network

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)
  • History

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