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Exchange structures in transition: Lending and trade relations in Chinese business groups

Publication ,  Journal Article
Keister, LA
Published in: American Sociological Review
January 1, 2001

The networks of interfirm relations that developed in business groups during economic transition are central to China's reform and are becoming an important part of the country's emergent economic structure. Using a recent and original data set that includes direct observations of economic choices made by firms, the process by which these interfirm lending and trade ties emerged and evolved in the early stages of reform is explored. Initially, information from sources external to the network dominated the formation and direction of exchange relations. Firms turned to their prior connections, took advantage of market position, and drew on bureaucratic power to develop alliances. Over time, internal influences gained importance, and managers increasingly drew on internal nontrade relations and other indicators inside the business group to identify lending and trade partners. The results demonstrate the central but changing role that social relations and environmental cues played in the creation of economic structure during China's transition. This study also contributes to an understanding of the processes of organizational adaptation to a major economic transition and interfirm alliance formation more generally. The findings reveal that firms select exchange partners of known reputation and solicit relations that reduce uncertainty, even when there is a cost involved.

Duke Scholars

Published In

American Sociological Review

DOI

ISSN

0003-1224

Publication Date

January 1, 2001

Volume

66

Issue

3

Start / End Page

336 / 360

Related Subject Headings

  • Sociology
  • 4410 Sociology
  • 1608 Sociology
 

Citation

APA
Chicago
ICMJE
MLA
NLM
Keister, L. A. (2001). Exchange structures in transition: Lending and trade relations in Chinese business groups. American Sociological Review, 66(3), 336–360. https://doi.org/10.2307/3088883
Keister, L. A. “Exchange structures in transition: Lending and trade relations in Chinese business groups.” American Sociological Review 66, no. 3 (January 1, 2001): 336–60. https://doi.org/10.2307/3088883.
Keister LA. Exchange structures in transition: Lending and trade relations in Chinese business groups. American Sociological Review. 2001 Jan 1;66(3):336–60.
Keister, L. A. “Exchange structures in transition: Lending and trade relations in Chinese business groups.” American Sociological Review, vol. 66, no. 3, Jan. 2001, pp. 336–60. Scopus, doi:10.2307/3088883.
Keister LA. Exchange structures in transition: Lending and trade relations in Chinese business groups. American Sociological Review. 2001 Jan 1;66(3):336–360.
Journal cover image

Published In

American Sociological Review

DOI

ISSN

0003-1224

Publication Date

January 1, 2001

Volume

66

Issue

3

Start / End Page

336 / 360

Related Subject Headings

  • Sociology
  • 4410 Sociology
  • 1608 Sociology