Commercial Diplomats as corporate entrepreneurs: explaining role behavior from an institutional perspective.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

This article presents the results of an empirical study on the roles of commercial diplomats at foreign posts. As commercial diplomacy is just starting to grow in importance in a globalising world, the actual work and activities of commercial diplomats at foreign posts have hardly been researched. This is relevant though, since it can help to advance theory that aims to understand commercial diplomacy's effectiveness. A model was developed that conceptualises commercial diplomats' roles as corporate entrepreneurial behaviour, and institutional theory was used to identify the contextual factors that influence their behaviour. By using a multi-method, qualitative and cross-sectional case study based on 23 self-selected, face-to-face, semi-structured interviews, we found that three types of commercial diplomats exist, each adopting a different approach in terms of the importance accredited to proactivity, the level at which it is pursued, and the intensity with which it is pursued. The influence of informal institutions increases for higher levels of proactivity in a specific order, namely background, skills and experience, cultural differences, and the working environment. Further research is needed to confirm these findings.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)42-79
JournalInternational journal of diplomacy and economy
Volume1
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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role behavior
diplomat
entrepreneur
diplomacy
entrepreneurial behavior
cultural difference
qualitative method
interview
experience

Keywords

  • IR-81735
  • METIS-286750

Cite this

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title = "Commercial Diplomats as corporate entrepreneurs: explaining role behavior from an institutional perspective.",
abstract = "This article presents the results of an empirical study on the roles of commercial diplomats at foreign posts. As commercial diplomacy is just starting to grow in importance in a globalising world, the actual work and activities of commercial diplomats at foreign posts have hardly been researched. This is relevant though, since it can help to advance theory that aims to understand commercial diplomacy's effectiveness. A model was developed that conceptualises commercial diplomats' roles as corporate entrepreneurial behaviour, and institutional theory was used to identify the contextual factors that influence their behaviour. By using a multi-method, qualitative and cross-sectional case study based on 23 self-selected, face-to-face, semi-structured interviews, we found that three types of commercial diplomats exist, each adopting a different approach in terms of the importance accredited to proactivity, the level at which it is pursued, and the intensity with which it is pursued. The influence of informal institutions increases for higher levels of proactivity in a specific order, namely background, skills and experience, cultural differences, and the working environment. Further research is needed to confirm these findings.",
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Commercial Diplomats as corporate entrepreneurs: explaining role behavior from an institutional perspective. / Ruel, Hubertus Johannes Maria; Visser, R.

In: International journal of diplomacy and economy, Vol. 1, No. 1, 2012, p. 42-79.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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