Document Type

Conference publication

Publication details

Post-print of: von der Heidt, T 2003, 'Reconciling interorganisational relationships: a metatheoretical analysis and systhesis of ten IOR theories', in A Buttery (ed.), Research in contemporary issues of marketing : best paper series from the inaugural Australian Conference of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, Sydney, NSW, 20-22 August, School of Marketing and International Business, UWS, South Penrith, N.S.W., pp. 33-50. ISBN: 0646426249


This paper synthesises the diverse literature on interorganisational relationships (IORs) by comparing the ten theories explaining the IOR phenomenon. The aim is not only to gain a better appreciation of the relative contributions of the different theories, but also to develop an integrative perspective as a foundation for developing models of collaborative IORs. In order to analyse and integrate IOR theories effectively, it is necessary to describe and discuss the conceptual and empirical contributions of the various theories. The first of four subsections summarises the survey of ten IOR theories in a diagrammatic representation of the contributions of and linkages between the theories. Extant conceptual and empirical work based on multiple IOR theories is reviewed next. In the third section a metatheoretical profile of the ten IOR theories is developed. Finally, these metatheoretical profiles are synthesised in terms of (1) level of analysis, (2) research tradition and (3) relative strengths and weaknesses.