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Paper info: Artefacts of Corporate Identity and Business Relationships


Artefacts of Corporate Identity and Business Relationships


CláudiaM Simões and
Katy Mason
Lancaster University
United Kingdom
Katy Mason

Place of Publication

The paper was published at the 25th IMP-conference in Marseille, France in 2009.


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 Relationship marketing is a concept that encompasses a wide range and forms of continuous exchanges between market players. The continuity of exchanges stresses the need for additional underlying postures and behavioural consistency, leading to the call for strong corporate identities as a means to maintain and develop such relationships. This study focuses on the manifestations of identity at the value chain  channel members  level. It constitutes an exploratory study into the association between market relationship dynamics and Corporate Identity (CI). In order to explore the multiple perspectives of CI within a supply network an exploratory-descriptive research design was adopted and twenty-eight interviews were the primary form of data collection within a single supply network from the engineering industry. Our findings suggest that CI embedded in artefacts helps buyers and suppliers define and shape both the terms of the agreement and the emergent inter-firm practices that would make the agreement work. Further, that CI embedded in artefacts helps to create common ground and shared cognitive maps of how relationships might work and how unanticipated problems might be handled. In this way artefacts became important boundary spanning objects.