, Volume 26, Issue 4, pp 322-337

The role of economic value, social value, and perceptions of fairness in interorganizational relationship retention decisions

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Abstract

Although previous research provides a foundation for developing, maintaining, and exiting relationships, the extant literature has yet to consider the influence that patterns of economic and social forces have in guiding the future of deteriorating relationships. To understand better and respond to relationships in decline and to salvage relationships that are destined to fail needlessly, the authors use the political economic paradigm to identify symptoms of deteriorating relationships and provide a framework for combining relational forces that best guides relationship retention decisions. They propose a model based on the theoretical foundations of transactional cost analysis (TCA), social exchange, and distributive justice. Using relative dependence, interdependence, and mutual dependence to define the economic and social worth of the relationship, they incorporate dyadic patterns of behavior to illustrate similar and different interpretations and evaluations of fairness and the impact on relational out-comes. The article culminates with managerial implications and directions for future research.

Jule B. Gassenheimer is an associate professor of marketing at the University of Kentucky. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Alabama. Her research interests include long-term buyer-seller relationships and channel strategy. Her previous work has appeared in a number of journals, which include theJournal of Marketing, theJournal of Retailing, theJournal of the Academy of Marketing Science, theJournal of Business Research, and theJournal of Personal Selling and Sales Management. She has also coauthored the bookMarketing Exchange Transactions and Relationships.
Franklin S. Houston is on faculty at Rutgers University in Camden, New Jersey. He received his Ph.D. from Purdue University’s Krannert School. His work has appeared in theJournal of the Academy of Marketing Science, theJournal of Marketing, theJournal of Marketing Research, Decision Sciences, theJournal of Advertising, theJournal of Business (Chicago), theJournal of Business Administration, theJournal of Retailing, theJournal of Macromarketing, and theJournal of Advertising Research. In addition, he has coauthored the bookMarketing Exchange Transactions and Relationships and edited the bookMarketing Exchange Relationships, Transactions, and Their Media.
J. Charlene Davis is on the faculty at Trinity University and is a doctoral candidate at the University of Kentucky. Her research interests include brand equity, services marketing, marketing theory, and buyer-seller relationships. Her previous work has appeared in theJournal of Retailing, theJournal of Marketing Theory and Practice, Advances in Consumer Research, theAssociation of Marketing Theory and Practice Conference Proceedings, and theAcademy of Marketing Science Multicultural Conference Proceedings.