Title: How to adequately balance between competition and cooperation? A typology of horizontal coopetition

Authors: Mourad Hannachi; Francois Coléno

Addresses: INRA UMR 1248 AGIR, BP 52627, 31326 Castanet-Tolosan Cedex, France. ' INRA UMR 1048 SAD-APT, Bâtiment EGER, Site de Grignon, BP 1-78850 Thiverval-Grignon, France

Abstract: This paper shows how rival firms organise themselves to manage collectively an interdependence situation. Based on several case studies on the management of the coexistence between GM and non-GM productions in the French agri-food industry, this research shows that grain merchants were able to federate, coordinate or influence all the stakeholders to control their agricultural lands. Our results indicate that it goes through cooperation relationships between rivals among coopetition strategies. This paper reveals the existence of three generic forms of coopetition: 1) The first is characterised by a coordination mechanism based on direct and informal relationships through tacit conventions and a strong embeddedness of the relationship; 2) The second is characterised by formal and indirect relationships which need the involvement of a third party in the coordination mechanism; 3) The third type is characterised by the setting up of a 'mediation arena' which allows for the construction of the collective actions.

Keywords: horizontal coopetition; co-opetition; coopertition; co-opertition; cooperative competition; typologies; biotechnology; collective management; interdependence; collective strategies; interorganisational relations; collective actions; coordination; mediation arenas; governance; genetically modified foods; GM foods; GMO foods; genetically modified organisms; grain merchants; corn; France; rival firms; coexistence; non-GM production; agri-food; agriculture; farming; food industry; stakeholders; land control ; agricultural lands; cooperation relationships; coordination mechanisms; direct relationships; informal relationships; tacit conventions; embeddedness; formal relationships; indirect relationships; third parties; Alsace; Isere; maize; small and medium-sized enterprises; SMEs; entrepreneurs; entrepreneurship research; Europe.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESB.2012.049577

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2012 Vol.17 No.3, pp.273 - 289

Available online: 09 Oct 2012 *

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