CFP: The Interplay of Competition and Cooperation

Targeted at those working on firms, but perhaps useful for those working on contracting …

Call for Papers for a Special Issue

The Interplay of Competition and Cooperation
Submission Deadline: July 1, 2015

Guest Editors
Werner Hoffmann, WU Vienna
Dovev Lavie, Technion
Jeffrey J. Reuer, Purdue University
Andrew Shipilov, INSEAD

SMJ Advising Editor
Alfonso Gambardella


Research in strategic management has traditionally focused on the study of
interfirm competition. It has related competitive advantage to industry
structure, to firms’ positions in product markets, and to their
idiosyncratic resource configurations. According to this tradition, the
dynamics of competitive interactions between firms shape their performance,
whereas interfirm cooperation is considered a form of collusion that
mitigates competition.

In the past couple of decades, however, cooperative interorganizational
relations (e.g., strategic alliances, joint ventures, and research
consortia) have drawn considerable attention, with scholars studying the
motivation for forming such relations, as well as issues related to partner
selection, alliance management, and performance implications. This stream of
research suggests that alliances and networks of interorganizational
relations directly contribute to firms’ competitiveness and performance
rather than merely constrain rivalry. However, this emerging literature on
cooperation has evolved almost independently of the literature on competition.

Although competition and cooperation have traditionally been considered
separate modes of interaction between firms, scholars have begun to
acknowledge that firms simultaneously engage in competition and cooperation
with each other. For instance, studies have investigated partners’
competitive behaviors within cooperative relations, examined how partners
seek to create and appropriate value, and explored how they engage in
“coopetition” in horizontal alliances. Prior research has also revealed
that competition can motivate alliance formation and industry clustering
just as cooperative relations can lead to learning races that ultimately
shape firms´ competitive positions. Nevertheless, most of the accumulated
research on cooperative strategy has not been integrated with literature on
competitive strategy, and the interplay of competition and cooperation has
remained under-researched.

Aims and Scope

This special issue seeks to promote research on the interplay of competition
and cooperation among firms. It encourages papers that connect the separate
streams of research on competitive strategy and cooperative strategy,
highlight value creation and appropriation in coopetitive interactions, and
combine inter- and intra-organizational levels of analysis. This special
issue also encourages papers that shed light on the coevolution of
competition and cooperation, while analysing their consequences or
identifying antecedents and mechanisms that drive their interplay.

Submitted papers should encompass both elements of competition and
cooperation. Studying the interplay of competition and cooperation may
entail considering how cooperation drives competition or vice-versa.
Alternatively, submissions may examine how competition and cooperation
jointly drive organizational outcomes. We further encourage papers that
underscore the trade-offs and tension between competition and cooperation.
We welcome both conceptual and empirical papers reporting either
quantitative or qualitative methods that rely on archival data analysis,
surveys, case studies, or experiments, with special interest in longitudinal
data, cross-disciplinary research, and multilevel approaches.

Within the scope of this special issue, submitted papers may focus on the
following themes:
(1) Antecedents, processes, and consequences of cooperating with competitors
(2) Value creation versus value appropriation in competition and cooperation
(3) The dynamics by which competition drives cooperation and vice versa
(4) Network analysis of the coevolution of competition and cooperation
(5) Coopetition, organization, and capabilities.

Below are examples of related research questions for each theme:

1. Antecedents, processes and consequences of cooperating with competitors
• How do environmental, organizational, managerial, and cognitive factors
drive coopetition?
• How do industry characteristics and resource configurations shape coopetition?
• How do firms maintain simultaneous cooperative and competitive relations?
•Should firms simultaneously cooperate and compete or rather separate their
partners from their competitors?
• How do firms mitigate the risks that stem from opportunistic behavior of
partners that operate as competitors?
• How do interorganizational trust, governance and routines emerge in
coopetitive relations?
• How does the pursuit of simultaneous competition and cooperation affect
firm performance?
• What are the various facets of coopetition and their respective
implications (e.g., innovation)?
• How does cooperation affect firms’ competitive positions?

2. Value Creation and Appropriation in Coopetition
• How do competition and cooperation relate in terms of value creation and
• How do firms simultaneously manage value creation and appropriation in
cooperative relations?
• What are the trade-offs and challenges of simultaneous competition and

3. The Dynamic Interplay between Competition and Cooperation
• How do competition and cooperation coevolve at the firm, dyad, network,
and industry levels?
• How does competition elicit cooperation?
• How and why do partners begin to compete?

4. Network Analysis of Competition and Cooperation
• How does multimarket competition relate to alliance formation and partner
• How do competition networks drive the evolution of cooperative networks
and vice versa?
• How does the interplay of competition networks and cooperative networks
shape firm performance and drive industry entry and exit?
• How does coopetition emerge in established cooperative networks?
• How do competitors of a firm’s partners or partners of the firm’s
competitors influence a firm’s strategy and performance?

5. Coopetition, Organization, and Capabilities
• What are the elements of a coopetition capability? How do they differ from
those of alliance management capability?
• How is a coopetition capability developed and institutionalized?
• How do coopetition capabilities of the firm and its partners shape

These suggested questions define the intended scope of the special issue but
are not meant to be exhaustive. We encourage new and novel research
questions that focus on the interplay of competition and cooperation.

Submission Process

Submitted papers should adhere to the format requirements of the Strategic
Management Journal.
Publication of the special issue is tentatively planned for early 2018.
Original submissions are due by July 1, 2015 and must be submitted using the
SMJ Submission system at Earlier
submissions are encouraged. Authors should indicate that they would like
their submission to be considered for the special issue “The Interplay of
Competition and Cooperation.” Authors of papers invited to be revised and
resubmitted will be expected to work within a tight timeframe to meet the
special issue’s publication deadline. A special issue conference is planned
at WU Vienna in fall 2016 to facilitate the revision and development of
papers for the special issue.

Further Information

For questions regarding the content of this special issue, please contact
the guest editors:
Werner Hoffmann, WU Vienna:
Dovev Lavie, Technion:
Jeffrey J. Reuer, Purdue University:
Andrew Shipilov, INSEAD: