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Theorizing ecosystem leadership: the paradox of social embeddedness

Li, Boyi and Rong, Ke (2018) Theorizing ecosystem leadership: the paradox of social embeddedness. In: EURAM 2018: Research in Action, 2018-06-19 - 2018-06-22, University of Iceland.

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Business ecosystem is a paradigm of organizing and strategizing innovation. Its salient feature lies on the uneasy combination of two seemingly contrasting institutional spheres: social community, and value co-creation networks. Leadership has been highlighted as the definitive element of business ecosystem since the early days. James Moore (1996) made it clear that the raison d’etre of ecosystem involves “exerting leadership – not control – over communities of individuals and organizations”. In this paper, we aim to theorize ecosystem leadership by understanding business ecosystem as organizational field of competing institutional logics and demands. We start from viewing business ecosystem as an organizational field with a dominant rule of game, norms, and worldviews. Despite the ecological connotation, business ecosystem is quintessentially a field of “habitus” in Pierre Bourdieu’s sense, characterized by dense networks of social relations, power-holding positions, and “capital” resources unevenly distributed among its participants. We aim to address the research question of paradoxical nature: How do ecosystem leaders reconcile the economic logic of value networks and the embeddedness logic of social community in order to gain the legitimacy of leadership in ecosystems?

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2018 The Authors
Divisions: Management
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Date Deposited: 27 Nov 2020 14:15
Last Modified: 05 Sep 2021 23:26

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