Stakeholder relations as social capital in early modern international trade
Ojala, J. & Luoma-aho, V. (2008). Stakeholder Relations as Social Capital in Early Modern International Trade. Business History, 50 (6), 749-764. DOI:10.1080/00076790802420310
Published inBusiness History
© Taylor & Francis. This is a final draft version of an article whose final and defenitive form has been published in the journal 'Business History' by Taylor & Francis.
Stakeholder relations that are available through networks of various sorts are one benefit from social capital. According to the stakeholder approach to organizations, those relationships that contain most of the important attributes—such as power, legitimacy, frequency of contact, and urgency—hypothetically dominate the business environment. This has caused modern corporations to view chiefly the dominant stakeholders as important. This study tests the importance of these attributes in early modern international trade; in other words, which attributes played a major role in the relations between Finnish tradesmen and their foreign contacts? The archives of two major Finnish trading houses from 1781−1852 provide sources to study these stakeholder relations. The results of the study seem to confirm the importance of legitimacy and power in stakeholder relations, but they particularly emphasize the significance of frequency and urgency. Furthermore, dealings repeated over time between the parties created a resource dependency, and, thus, further underlining frequency and power as important stakeholder attributes. ...