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Standardization: bridging the gap between economic and social theory


Keil, Thomas; Fomin, Vladislav (2000). Standardization: bridging the gap between economic and social theory. In: International Conference on Information Systems, Brisbane, 10 December 2000 - 13 December 2000, 206-217.

Abstract

This article examines the dynamics of inter- and intra-firm networks in technical standard setting initiatives, and how complex social networks align in these initiatives. Specifically, we argue that in standardization, complex economic and social interactions are blended. In standardization activities, firm behavior and the behavior of individuals within firms is best explained through an integration of social, political, and economic perspectives. In this article we use two main bodies of theory. First, we draw on the economic literature on standard setting and alliance formation. Second we use social network theory to complement economic arguments. In this paper we integrate streams of literature on the creation and diffusion of technical standards from industrial organization economics, strategic management, and innovation economics with recent literature concerning the social construction of technology in order to analyze the process of standard setting. We develop our arguments with the help of three in-depth case studies of standardization initiatives in the telecommunications industry. Two case studies are in the realm of telecommunications infrastructure. The third case study analyzes the standardization of a wireless data link. The cases can be characterized as examples of the successful creation of both de facto and de jure standards.

Abstract

This article examines the dynamics of inter- and intra-firm networks in technical standard setting initiatives, and how complex social networks align in these initiatives. Specifically, we argue that in standardization, complex economic and social interactions are blended. In standardization activities, firm behavior and the behavior of individuals within firms is best explained through an integration of social, political, and economic perspectives. In this article we use two main bodies of theory. First, we draw on the economic literature on standard setting and alliance formation. Second we use social network theory to complement economic arguments. In this paper we integrate streams of literature on the creation and diffusion of technical standards from industrial organization economics, strategic management, and innovation economics with recent literature concerning the social construction of technology in order to analyze the process of standard setting. We develop our arguments with the help of three in-depth case studies of standardization initiatives in the telecommunications industry. Two case studies are in the realm of telecommunications infrastructure. The third case study analyzes the standardization of a wireless data link. The cases can be characterized as examples of the successful creation of both de facto and de jure standards.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper), not_refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Business Administration
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Language:English
Event End Date:13 December 2000
Deposited On:13 Sep 2019 06:15
Last Modified:04 May 2020 09:42
Publisher:ICIS
Number:20
OA Status:Green
Free access at:Official URL. An embargo period may apply.
Official URL:https://aisel.aisnet.org/icis2000/20
Other Identification Number:merlin-id:8275

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