Avoiding separation: sport partner perspectives on a long-term inter-organisational relationship
by Ted Alexander, Lucie Thibault, Wendy Frisby
International Journal of Sport Management and Marketing (IJSMM), Vol. 3, No. 3, 2008

Abstract: Researchers have identified the stages of inter-organisational relationships (IOR) (i.e., formation, management, and evaluation), however, few have examined how these stages are enacted over time from the partners' perspectives. We conducted a case study of a dyadic IOR between a non-profit provincial sport organisation (Tennis PSO) and a public sector sport and recreation department over three years. Our analysis revealed that partner motives for forming the alliance differed as one partner focused on determinants of necessity, efficiency, and reciprocity, while the other partner sought increased legitimacy (Oliver, 1990). Both partners were satisfied with the management approach because expertise and resources were shared, clear lines of responsibility and communication were established, and power struggles were avoided. Achieving a mutually desired outcome early helped sustained the IOR, even though only marginal increases in tennis participation occurred. Links between the stages of IOR and the implications of the findings are discussed.

Online publication date: Mon, 18-Feb-2008

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