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How managers can build trust in strategic alliances: a meta-analysis on the central trust-building mechanisms

Meier, Matthias; Lütkewitte, Martina; Mellewigt, Thomas and Decker, Carolin (2016). How managers can build trust in strategic alliances: a meta-analysis on the central trust-building mechanisms. Journal of Business Economics, 86(3) pp. 229–257.

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Trust is an important driver of superior alliance performance. Alliance managers are influential in this regard because trust requires active involvement, commitment and the dedicated support of the key actors involved in the strategic alliance. Despite the importance of trust for explaining alliance performance, little effort has been made to systematically investigate the mechanisms that managers can use to purposefully create trust in strategic alliances. We use Parkhe’s (1998b) theoretical framework to derive nine hypotheses that distinguish between process-based, characteristic-based and institutional-based trust-building mechanisms. Our meta-analysis of 64 empirical studies shows that trust is strongly related to alliance performance. Process-based mechanisms are more important for building trust than characteristic- and institutional-based mechanisms. The effects of prior ties and asset specificity are not as strong as expected and the impact of safeguards on trust is not well understood. Overall, theoretical trust research has outpaced empirical research by far and promising opportunities for future empirical research exist.

Item Type: Journal Item
Copyright Holders: 2015 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
ISSN: 0044-2372
Keywords: meta-analysis; strategic alliances; trust; alliance performance; alliance manager
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Business and Law (FBL) > Business > Department for Public Leadership and Social Enterprise
Faculty of Business and Law (FBL) > Business
Faculty of Business and Law (FBL)
Item ID: 54457
Depositing User: Carolin Decker-Lange
Date Deposited: 17 Apr 2018 10:48
Last Modified: 02 May 2019 11:28
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