An Exploration of the Antecedents and Impact of Imitative Behavior

Bau-Jung Chang


Diverse disciplines in management research have explained the imitative behavior of firms and the benefits of imitation in different angles, but the integrated framework and relevant research are limited. This paper proposed a conceptual framework to unravel the imitative behavior, including the antecedents of imitative behavior and the linkage with firm performance. Based on literatures of imitation, this paper proposed three perspectives, namely competition-oriented, information-oriented and freerider-oriented perspectives, to discuss the formation of imitative behavior. Furthermore, the absorptive capacity also played an important role when the firms observe and access relevant outside knowledge about the actions, and may impact the relationship between imitative behavior and performance. Finally, this paper developed several propositions and a conceptual framework to enrich our understanding on imitative behavior.

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International Journal of Business and Management   ISSN 1833-3850 (Print)   ISSN 1833-8119 (Online)

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