Principal-Agent Multiplicity in Headquarters-Subsidiary Relationships of Multinational Corporations

Item Type Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Abstract

The relationship between headquarters and subsidiaries has been the focus of many studies applying diverse theories. A common yet somewhat dormant perspective is agency theory, which views headquarters as principals and subsidiaries as agents. While this perspective has facilitated analyses on e.g., subsidiary-specific control strategies, it falls short in recognizing the complexities found in contemporary MNCs. It is argued that agency relationships are not limited to the ones between headquarters and subsidiary top managers, but can be found on many levels. We build on the traditional notion, and theoretically advance it by allowing for internal units inside headquarters and subsidiaries. As a consequence, we find multiple agency relationships, as well as multiple principals to the same agent. Theoretical implications are discussed and propositions put forward.

Authors Schulte Steinberg, Adrian; Kunisch, Sven & Ambos, Björn
Language English
Keywords Agency theory, headquarters-subsidiary relationships
Subjects business studies
Institute/School ?? 5749 ??
IfB - Institute of Management
?? SoM Pr Inst ??
?? SoM LA / UA ??
?? SoM L&P ??
HSG Classification contribution to scientific community
HSG Profile Area SoM - Responsible Corporate Competitiveness (RoCC)
Refereed Yes
Date 30 May 2015
Publisher Strategic Management Society
Page Range 1-7
Number of Pages 7
Event Title 2015 SMS Strategic Management Society Special Conference
Event Location St.Gallen
Event Dates 28.-20.05.2015
Depositing User Adrian Schulte Steinberg
Date Deposited 27 Apr 2015 11:14
Last Modified 26 Jan 2018 15:20
URI: https://www.alexandria.unisg.ch/publications/240732

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Citation

Schulte Steinberg, Adrian; Kunisch, Sven & Ambos, Björn: Principal-Agent Multiplicity in Headquarters-Subsidiary Relationships of Multinational Corporations. 2015. - 2015 SMS Strategic Management Society Special Conference. - St.Gallen.

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https://www.alexandria.unisg.ch/id/eprint/240732
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