How Does Opportunistic Behavior Influence Firm Size? An Evolutionary Approach to Organizational Behavior
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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This paper relates firm size and opportunism by showing that, given certain behavioral dispositions of humans, the size of a profit-maximizing firm can be determined by cognitive aspects underlying firminternal cultural transmission processes. We argue that what firms do better than markets – besides economizing on transaction costs – is to establish a cooperative regime among its employees that keeps in check opportunism. A model depicts the outstanding role of the entrepreneur or business leader in firminternal socialization processes and the evolution of corporate cultures. We show that high opportunismrelated costs are a reason for keeping firms’ size small
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