Networks and Organizations: Structure, Form and Action by Robert G. Eccles
Networks form essential links in all organizations. They exist among co-workers, among firms, and among individuals and institutions. They establish patterns that both propel and impede activity. Since networks are such a vital component of how organizations function, it is increasingly important for businesses to understand how they work. "Networks and Organizations" explores the significant link between the structure of an organization and how it affects action. Using the perspectives of leading scholars and practitioners in sociology and management, it examines such timely issues as: is entrepreneurial activity easier in some networks than in others?; can electronic ties substitute for face-to-face relations?; are industries such as biotechnology better learning systems because of extensive networking?; do highly networked economies, like Japan's, have a comparative advantage? Based on a Harvard Business School colloquium, this book considers networks in various firms, industries and economies. It aims to provide managers and researchers with new insight into understanding the pivotal role of networks in organizations.