School of Business

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Research

My research interests are focused on two main areas of the broader field of strategic management. First, I am interested in strategy formation processes. In particular, I study how these processes can be designed to support managers in their quest to successfully formulate and implement strategies under high environmental uncertainty. My research builds on and extends behavioral decision theory and strategy process research by studying the effects of rationality/comprehensiveness versus politics, strategic consensus, organizational control, and organizational learning on organizational performance; the determinants of decision-making speed; and decision makers’ cognitions and judgments in decision processes.

Second, I am interested in knowledge transfer and, in particular, the performance effects of knowledge and other resource exchanges between individuals, across strategic business units within organizations, and across organizations. This part of my research builds on and extends information processing, social networks, and social capital theories.
 
Within these areas, I strive to maintain a balance of macro-level (e.g., interfirm collaborations and networks) and micro-level studies (e.g., decision-making processes; interpersonal knowledge-transfer processes), with the latter aimed at understanding the micro-level mechanisms behind macro-level relationships, and both with the ultimate goal of explaining performance differences at the individual and organizational levels. A number of my research projects also allow me to build on and extend theories from both research areas, such as my studies of decision-making processes in interfirm alliances and of people’s decision processes guiding their choices of knowledge-exchange partners. I conduct quantitative as well as qualitative (i.e., based on content analysis and grounded theorizing) data collections and analyses.


First research stream: Strategy formation processes

  • Walter, J., Lechner, C., & Kellermanns, F. W. (forthcoming). Learning activities, exploration, and the performance of strategic initiatives. Journal of Management.
  • Kellermanns, F. W., Walter, J., Crook, T. R., Kemmerer, B., & Narayanan, V. K. (forthcoming). The resource-based view in entrepreneurship: A content-analytical comparison of researchers' and entrepreneurs' views. Journal of Small Business Management.
  • Kownatzki, M., Walter, J., Floyd, S. W., & Lechner, C. (in press). Corporate control and the speed of SBU-level decision making. Academy of Management Journal, doi:10.5465/amj.2011.0804.
  • Walter, J., Kellermanns, F. W., Floyd, S. W., Veiga, J. F., & Matherne, C. (2013). Strategic alignment: A missing link in the relationship between strategic consensus and organizational performance. Strategic Organization: 11(3): 304-328.
  • Walter, J., Kellermanns, F. W., & Lechner, C. (2012). Decision making within and between organizations: Rationality, politics, and alliance performance. Journal of Management, 38(5): 1582-1610.
  • Kemmerer, B., Walter, J., Kellermanns, F. W., & Narayanan, V. K. (2012). A judgment-analysis perspective on entrepreneurs’ resource evaluations. Journal of Business Research, 65(8): 1102-1108.
  • Kellermanns, F. W., Walter, J., Floyd, S. W., Lechner, C., Shaw, J. C. (2011). To agree or not to agree? A meta-analytical review of strategic consensus and organizational performance. Journal of Business Research, 64(2): 126-133.
  • Walter, J., Lechner, C., & Kellermanns, F. W. (2008). Disentangling alliance management processes: Decision making, politicality, and alliance performance. Journal of Management Studies, 45(3): 530-560.
  • Kellermanns, F. W., Walter, J., Lechner, C., & Floyd, S. W. (2005). The lack of consensus about strategic consensus: Advancing theory and research. Journal of Management, 31(5): 719-737.


Second research stream: Knowledge transfer, social networks, and social capital

  • Erdogan, B., Bauer, T. N., & Walter, J. (forthcoming). Deeds that help and words that hurt: Helping and gossip as moderators of the relationship between leader-member exchange and advice network centrality. Personnel Psychology, DOI: 10.1111 peps.12075.
  • Walter, J. (2012). The influence of firm and industry characteristics on returns from technology licensing deals: Evidence from the U.S. computer and pharmaceutical sectors. R&D Management, 42(5): 435-454.
  • Levin, D. Z., Walter, J., & Murnighan, J. K. (2011). Dormant ties: The value of reconnecting. Organization Science, 22(4): 923-939.
  • Levin, D. Z., Walter, J., & Murnighan, J. K. (2011). The power of reconnection--How dormant ties can surprise you. MIT Sloan Management Review, 52(3): 45-50.
  • Walter, J., Lechner, C., & Kellermanns, F. W. (2007). Knowledge transfer between and within alliance partners: Private versus collective benefits of social capital. Journal of Business Research, 60(7): 698-710.