Date of Award

2016

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Department

Moore School of Business

Sub-Department

Business Administration

First Advisor

Andrew Spicer

Abstract

Through a collection of three integrated essays, this dissertation investigates how institutional logics shape the way firms and their decision makers perceive, interpret, and respond to political connectedness. More specifically, it elaborates on the cognitive mechanisms through which institutional logics affect responses to political connectedness. Essay 1 provides a fresh perspective to studying political connectedness by showing how the differences in the interplay between multiple institutional logics generate opposing logics – bureaucratic logic in developed countries vs. patrimonial logic in emerging countries –, which lead to two dissimilar forms of firm-government interaction across countries. Essay 2 proposes a new conceptual framework, institutional sensemaking, which I develop by building on the institutional logics and sensemaking literatures. This framework is used to investigate how bureaucratic logic and patrimonial logic differently shape the way the expatriate managers make sense of and respond to political connectedness in China. Essay 3 examines how managerial sensemaking affects firms’ responses to dissimilar logics of firm-government interaction by looking at the relationship between managers’ attention focus and their internationalization choices regarding whether to expand into developed countries – where bureaucratic logic prevails – or into emerging countries – where patrimonial logic prevails.

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