Advances in Strategic Management, Volume 35
Corporate Strategy and Resource Redeployment
Timothy B. Folta, Constance E. Helfat, and Samina Karim
Submission Deadline: May 15, 2015
It is well understood that whether corporate strategists create value is determined by their ability to deploy resources across multiple business units. Strategies in pursuit of “synergy,” where resources are simultaneously shared across businesses, have commanded the dominant attention of researchers and practitioners to date. Only recently has it been explicated that a second type of resource deployment strategy might create corporate value by providing discretion or flexibility to partially or completely withdraw resources from one business and reallocate them to another business. This strategy has been referred to as “inter-temporal economies of scope,” “resource redeployability,” and “resource reconfiguration,” and differs from synergy in that resources are withdrawn from one business and reallocated to another, rather than contemporaneously shared across businesses. It is believed that when firms can redeploy their resources in this manner, it provides greater potential to escape from declining prospects in a business, and is particularly valuable in turbulent environments. As a result, resource redeployability may affect not only firm value creation, but also firm and industry evolution. Despite recent advances in our understanding of resource redeployment, the discussion remains emergent around how it and synergy differentially affect value and firm decision-making. There are at least three substantive opportunities to advance our understanding of this debate:
First, we need more clarity about the theoretical determinants and effects of synergy versus resource redeployment. Relevant research questions might include:
- How are the determinants of synergistic value different from the determinants of value derivable from resource redeployment?
- Is the value deriving from resource redeployment necessarily associated with multi-business firms, or might single-business firms also benefit? What are the conditions under which single-business firms might benefit from redeployability?
- What environmental conditions are best suited to a strategy based on resource redeployment? And how do firm redeployment strategies affect industry evolution?
- When can resource redeployment be proactive versus reactive? What processes can help organizations to identify redeployment opportunities?
- How can executives manage the human resource challenges around resource redeployment (i.e., maintaining morale of employees; or getting division managers to take actions that can lead to withdrawal of resources)?
Second, we need more clarity about how to empirically disentangle synergy from redeployability, because they may have common derivatives, such as resource relatedness.
- How might scholars empirically distinguish whether value is derived from synergy or the flexibility to redeploy resources? Is it possible to distinguish the sources of value creation through the use of different variables, or will it require clever methodology/ research design to isolate differences?
- How do we consistently identify scale-free versus non scale-free resources?
- Do managers consider the flexibility to redeploy when making entry or exit decisions?
Finally, we may need to revisit prior work investigating the benefits of corporate strategy based on synergy, in order to assess the extent to which prior results may stem from resource redeployability.
- Because existing work tends not to distinguish between synergy and resource redeployment, is it possible that existing work provides an incomplete picture of the contributions of resource relatedness to firm value and firm decision-making?
- How would the results of prior research on the value created by corporate strategy change if resource redeployability were included?
Despite recent work to address the three issues identified above, significant work remains. In this call, we invite theoretical and empirical work that tackles these and related issues.
Submissions are due no later than May 15, 2015. All papers submitted must represent original research not previously published elsewhere. All submissions will be subject to in-depth review, and editorial decisions and revision requests will be communicated to authors by September 1, 2015. Authors going forward to the second round will be invited to present their revised paper at a conference in October or November 2015 in Strasbourg France (exact date TBD), with travel supplements provided. The targeted publication date for the volume is August 2016.
To submit a paper, or to ask questions about the content of this AiSM volume or the editorial process, please contact the volume editors,
Timothy Folta (firstname.lastname@example.org), Constance Helfat(Constance.E.Helfat@tuck.dartmouth.edu), or Samina Karim (email@example.com)
or the AiSM series editor, Brian Silverman (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Further information on the series can be found at: