To Produce, Co-produce, Enable or Co-enable? The Art of Balancing Managerial Action in Inter-Organizational Networks

Timo Jarvensivu, Rika Rajala


This paper focuses on the practice of network management. Applying the action research methodology, a study of eight elderly care development networks in two cities in Finland is presented. The results address two key managerial questions: Should the focus be on what or how? and Should network participants perform together or should some participants work on behalf of the network? These two questions are shown to relate to two of the most fundamental dimensions of any network management circumstance. Together they form a matrix of four management modes: producing (what—on behalf), co-producing (what—together), enabling (how—on behalf) and co-enabling (how—together). We argue that by carefully balancing these four management modes, a network manager can start with a weaker, more closed network and gradually build a strong, more open network.

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International Journal of Business Administration
ISSN 1923-4007(Print) ISSN 1923-4015(Online)


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