1.5. Databases, Network Analysis, and QCA


Databases, Network Analysis, and QCA


Erica Salvaj, Universidad del Desarrollo (Chile), Universidad de San Andrés (Argentina)

Erica Salvaj is Professor of General Management and Strategy and Research Director at the School of Business and Economics at Universidad del Desarrollo (UDD), Chile and Visiting Scholar at Universidad de San Andres, Argentina.   Her primary fields of research are strategy, leadership, social networks, corporate governance, international business, gender and business history. 

She completed her Ph.D. in Business Administration at IESE Business School, Barcelona, was GCEE Fellow at Babson College, and has received fellowships and research grants from the Argentinean and Chilean National Commissions for Scientific and Technological Research. She has been awarded the fellowship “Alfred Chandler” from Harvard Business School and the Australia-APEC Women in Research Fellowship. 

Her publications have appeared in leading journals including Global Strategy Journal, Journal of Business Research, Harvard Business Review, Corporate Governance, Business History, Enterprise and Society, Business History Review, and Multinational Business Review, among others.  Erica has been an active member of the OMT Division at AOM since 2007 and the Iberoamerican Academy of Management.  She contributed as a reviewer, presenter, and PDW organizer.  Also, in recent years she has been a faculty facilitator for the Doctoral Student Consortium

Alberto Rinaldi, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia (Italy)

Alberto Rinaldi is Associate Professor of Economic History at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia (Italy). His primary fields of research are industrial districts, local development, social networks, corporate governance, gender and business history. 

He completed his Ph.D. in Economic and Social History at Bocconi University, Milan, was visiting scholar at the Centre for International Business History (University of Reading, UK) and has received research grants from the Italian Ministry for University and Scientific Research. 

His publications have appeared in leading journals including Business History, Explorations in Economic History, Enterprise & Society, Cliometrica, Journal of Policy Modeling, Financial History Review, among others. He is an active member of the European Business History Association where he contributed as a reviewer and presenter.

Susie Pak, St. John’s University (New York)

Susie J. Pak is an Associate Professor in the Department of History. A graduate of Dartmouth College and Cornell University, she is the author of Gentlemen Bankers: The World of J.P. Morgan (Harvard University Press, 2013). Pak has served as a Trustee of the Business History Conference, and she serves as co-chair of the Columbia University Economic History Seminar and as co-editor of the Global Enterprise series of Cambridge University Press. She is a member of the Editorial Advisory Boards of Business History Review, Financial History, and Connections, the journal of the International Network of Social Network Analysis.

The chair of this session is: Valeria Giacomin

Description of workshop 

In this workshop we will discuss the application of Social Network Analysis (SNA) and Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) methodologies to business networks with a long term and historical perspective. We will introduce QCA, which is used to classify in fuzzy sets that grade the presence of different conditions that explain an output (Schneider & Wagemann 2012). The method is suited for small and mid-size cases as its objective is to analyze sets relations (Ragin, 2000). We will also discuss the basic concepts of Social Network Analysis (SNA) by introducing how to turn historical qualitative and quantitative archival data into excel data suitable for the study of social networks using a program called UCINET. We will introduce cases of corporate boards from Argentina, Chile and Italy from 1900 to 2020 and social clubs and partnership ties in J. P. Morgan from 1895 to 1940 (Lluch & Salvaj 2014; Salvaj & Couyoumdjian 2016; Rinaldi & Vasta 2014; Pak 2013). Corporate networks represent a structural condition in a society that enables and inhibits the decisions of shareholders and directors. These “informal mechanisms” are a relevant element in the study of corporate governance. The presentation focuses on one specific type of network, Interlocking directorates (IDs). An interlock is the link formed between two firms when a person is a director of both. IDs constitute the structure (or at list part of it), in which the structure of economic life is embedded (Granovetter 1985). The literature on IDs (David & Westerhuis 2014) shows that these ties influence the flow of knowledge of opportunities and the capability to act by access to different resources. Interlock ties are established to lower information and transaction costs and gaining privileged access to markets. Board networks are potential sources of learning and diffusion of information and knowledge. Additionally, IDs impact on firm status, reputation, and power. Another strand of literature has analyzed IDs from the perspective of links between individuals. Here the configuration of ties can be considered an indication of the cohesion of the corporate elite (Mizruchi 1996; Carroll 2010). Dense networks erect barriers against free riding and impose a certain code of ethics amongst the members of the elite (Windolf 2014).

Pak will specifically share her methodology for transforming historical qualitative data on social clubs, syndicate participations, and partnership agreements from her study of American private banking networks before the Second World War. Pak will discuss how the utility of SNA depends entirely on one’s question and one’s data and is available to answer questions about the nature of one’s data and if it would be useful to use.

For more information or if you wish to participate in this workshop, please check this document.