The Interactive Constitution of Actors in Industrial Networks: The Case of the Norwegian City of Ålesund

Frans Prenkert


The actor-dimension of the Activitiy-Resource-Actor (ARA)-model has not gained the same attention among Industrial Marketing and Purchasing (IMP) scholars as the resource and activity dimensions. However, the issue of what an actor actually is, in the sense of its interactive constitution, is important from an industrial marketing and purchasing perspective that emphasizes the interactive character of the business landscape. This is adressed in this paper. As a concequence of their interactive constitution, actors come in many forms and they are never pre-determined but rather continuously forged out of interactions. In this paper, the Activity-Resource-Actor-model is used to illustrate how actors are forged by interaction and to explore interaction-patterns around an actor of an unusual shape: A city. The purpose is to explore the small world of a city as a business actor and to illustrate the multi-level and variable character of actors. The paper concludes with a definition of what is termed interactive actors.

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


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