Session 34

Competitive Cognitive Dynamics

Track B

Date: Thursday, March 18, 2010


Time: 13:15 – 14:45


Room: Kokoustila 2

Session Chair:

Title: Competition Antecedents of Strategy Differentiation: A Study of Managerial Cognition


  • Anders Pehrsson, Linnaeus University

Abstract: This study relies on managerial cognition literature and extends our understanding of firm strategy antecedents. The model suggests that the firm’s perceived competition and market experience affect its differentiation. The model contrasts two competition contingencies stemming from industrial organization theory and competitive dynamics theory (barriers to competition and competitors’ differentiation). Hypotheses were tested on 168 Swedish firms competing in the Swedish and Polish markets. First, it was found that perceived competition may consist of three reliable factors: government requirements, dominant competitors, and the main competitor’s differentiation. Second, the barrier of dominant competitors and the main competitor’s differentiation affect the firm’s differentiation positively, while the firm’s market experience has a reinforcing effect. The main effect of market experience is negative. Contributions to literature are discussed.

Title: Does Common Industry Recipe Frame Chef's Mind?


  • Jong-Seok Kim, University of Manchester

Abstract: In order to provide a plausible explanation of strategic commonalities among firms, we examined three mobile operators in South Korea mobile telecommunication industry to diversify into digital music market on the causal relationship between managerial cognition and market structure. Through empirical evidence, we confirmed that managerial cognition influenced by industry cognitive structure frames similar strategies. A group-level brief to digital music market by three mobile operators on similar capabilities also created a cognitive strategic group on digital music market, which consequently demonstrated different firm performances against other digital music service providers. While a group structure can be a source of competitive advantage, it raises an importance of capabilities to follow similar strategies.

Title: Reproductive Selection in Firm Evolution: Theory and Field Study


  • Jaakko Aspara, Helsinki School of Economics
  • Juha-Antti Lamberg, Helsinki University of Technology
  • Henrikki Tikkanen, Aalto University
  • Arjo Laukia, Helsinki University of Technology

Abstract: The purpose of this article is to provide a novel bridge between cognitive and ecological perspectives to firm evolution, by applying an often-forgotten evolutionary concept of Charles Darwin, i.e., sexual/reproductive selection. The authors sketch a theoretical argument regarding the evolution of a multi-business corporation based on the idea of reproductive selection. The argument is elaborated through analysis of qualitative–historical data on the strategic renewal of a prominent global firm, Nokia Corporation, in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Theoretical work and historical analysis result in a set of theoretical propositions which, in many ways, bridge existing cognitive and ecological views to firm evolution.

Title: Speech Acts in Competitive Dynamics Research: A Philosophical Reconceptualization


  • Tomi Nokelainen, Åbo Akademi University

Abstract: A recent development in the competitive dynamics research has, following Wittgensteinian tradition, conceptualized competitive interaction between rivalrous companies as a ‘language game’ – interaction in which speech acts play a visible and influential role. However, extant competitive dynamics research does not make an explicit conceptual distinction between different kinds of speech acts but rather treat them as a more or less undifferentiated class of actions. Building on linguistically-oriented philosophical literature I demonstrate that there are several distinct types of speech acts all of which serve very different purposes in discourse. I also illustrate how all these different speech acts are manifested in a specific real-life competitive setting. Moreover, I discuss the potential implications of such a conceptual taxonomy of speech acts for future competitive dynamics research.

All Sessions in Track B...

Thu: 13:15 – 14:45
Session 34: Competitive Cognitive Dynamics
Thu: 15:15 – 16:45
Session 35: Sensemaking and Sensegiving
Thu: 17:00 – 18:30
Session 32: Metaphors and Minds
Fri: 10:15 – 11:45
Session 36: Cognition and Capabilities
Fri: 13:15 – 14:45
Session 43: The Role of Top Management in Strategizing

Strategic Management Society