It has been argued that there is a ‘paucity of research on guanxi in the Chinese management literature’ (Luo, 1997: 43) and ‘a paucity of research in an empirical setting as to what constitutes guanxi, and what explains the varying guanxi perceptions across cultures and nations’ (Dunning and Kim, 2007: 329). These observations are reflected in the level of controversy and considerable academic debate as to exactly what guanxi is; what the roots of guanxi are; and whether or not the use and potency of guanxi are waning, as both China and overseas Chinese polities are industrialising, modernising and increasingly exposed to more explicit Western styles of political, economic and social institutions. The paper reports on a key aspect of the nature and role of guanxi, elicited from a comprehensive exploratory empirical study into if and how the practice of guanxi is changing over time and distance. Specifically, it explores whether politico-legal systems in various polities moderate the reliance on guanxi in commercial activity.
22nd Annual Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management Conference (ANZAM 2008). 22nd ANZAM Conference 2008: Managing in the Pacific Century (Auckland, NZ 2-5 December, 2008)