The role of embeddedness in the evolution of business networks

A1 Journal article (refereed)

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: Halinen Aino, Törnroos Jan-Åke
Publisher: Elsevier
Publication year: 1988
Journal: Scandinavian Journal of Management
Journal acronym: SCJM
Volume number: 14
Issue number: 3
Start page: 187
End page: 205


This article deals with the concept of embeddedness and its role in understanding the evolution of business networks. Networks are viewed as structures of inter-firm relationships that emerge and evolve through continuous interactive processes. Embeddedness refers to companies' relations with, and dependence on, various types of network. Six types of embeddedness are distinguished and the vertical and horizontal dimensions of the phenomenon are analysed. The concept of the actor's representational role is introduced to illustrate how embeddedness functions as a force for change in the evolution of networks. Cases from a variety of business contexts are used to describe the aspects of embeddedness, and their impact on the process of network evolution. In conclusion some implications for research and practice are presented.


  • Business networks;

  • embeddedness;

  • network evolution;

  • process research


Business networks, Embeddedness, network evolution, Process research, Theoretical perspectives

Last updated on 2020-09-04 at 07:49