Andrew A. King





Citation listing here.


King, A.A. & Prado, A. & Rivera, J. Industry Self-regulation, Oxford University Handbook on Business and Environment. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK (forthcoming)

Berchicci, L., & King, A. 2007. Postcards from the edge:  A review of the business and environment literature. Chapter 11 Annals of the Academy of Management.

Abstract: Environmental issues, while of growing interest, have been outside the main focus of business scholarship.  This position on the periphery, we argue, may have been a good thing.  It allowed scholars of business and the environment to consider unusual theories and evaluate unconsidered phenomenon. In doing so, these scholars have developed a body of research that provides new insights on two mainstream issues -- the source of competitive advantage and the nature of self-regulatory institutions.

King, A.A. & Toffel, M. 2007. Self-regulatory Institutions for Solving Environmental Problems: Perspectives and Contributions from the Management Literature, in Magali Delmas and Oran Young (Ed.) Governing The Environment: Interdisciplinary Perspectives

Abstract: What role can business managers play in protecting the natural environment? Academic research on when it might "pay to be green" has advanced understanding of how and when firms achieve sustained competitive advantage. The focus of such research, however, has begun to change in light of limits to available "win-win" opportunities and to gaps in regulation. This book chapter reviews current literature and explores the potential of self-regulatory institutions to solve environmental problems.


Berchicci, L. Dowell, G. & King, A.Environmental Performance and Corporate Strategy:  Exploring Acquisitions Among US Manufacturing Firms. (Accepted at the Strategic Management Journal)

Abstract: In this article, we investigate whether environmental capabilities influence firms’ corporate strategies, which is a topic that has received little attention to date.  We hypothesize that firms are more likely to acquire facilities when ownership facilitates the transfer of capabilities either to or from the facility.  Using a panel from the U.S. Government’s Toxic Release Inventory, we find that firms with superior environmental capabilities are significantly more likely to acquire physically proximate facilities with inferior environmental capabilities and vice versa.  Our results extend theories of both corporate and environmental strategy.

Berchicci, L., King, A. & Tucci, C. (forthcoming) Does the Apple always fall close to the tree? Evaluating when Spin-offs stay close to their parents, Forthcoming in Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal.

Abstract: Previous studies suggest that spinouts will locate in close proximity to the firm from which they spawn.  As a result of this process, clusters of entrepreneurial activity tend to develop around a few strong parent firms.  But do all spinouts really stay close to home?  We demonstrate that spinout firms choose heterogeneous technological and market strategies, and hypothesize that firms with more aggressive strategies have a greater need to maintain local relationships.  We find supporting evidence of our theory by analyzing the location, technology, and market decisions of intra-industry spinouts in their first year in the disk drive industry

Barnett, A. & King A. 2008.  Good fences make good neighbors: A longitudinal analysis of an industry self-regulatory institution, Forthcoming in the Academy of Management Journal.

Abstract: We extend theories of self-regulation of physical commons to analyze self-regulation of intangible commons in modern industry. We posit that when the action of one firm can cause spillover harm to others, firms share a type of commons. We theorize that the need to protect this commons can motivate the formation of a self-regulatory institution. Using data from the US chemical industry, we find that spillover harm from industrial accidents increased after a major industry crisis and decreased following the formation of a new institution. Additionally, our findings suggest that the institution lessened spillovers from participants to the broader industry.

Terlaak, A. & King A. 2007. Follow The Small? Information-Revealing Adoption Bandwagons When Profitability Expectations Are Related To Size. Strategic Management Journal, 28 (12): 1167-1185

We extend understanding of information-revealing bandwagons by considering a common condition under which adoption of a practice by small organizations, rather than large ones, has a disproportionate influence on future adoption propensities. We hypothesize that when the value of adoption increases with organizational size, smaller adopters have such disproportionate influence because they allow observers better to infer that adoption will be profitable for their own organization. We elaborate the theory by predicting that alternative information sources moderate the influence of smaller adopters. Empirically, we test our theory with longitudinal data on the adoption of the ISO 9000 quality management standard.

King A. 2007. Cooperation Between Corporations and Environmental Groups: A Transaction Cost Perspective,  Academy of Management Review,32 (3): 889-900 

Abstract:  Theory suggests that when transaction costs are low, corporations and stakeholders can minimize social costs by transacting to their mutual advantage, but when transaction costs are high, reducing social costs requires the intervention of a centralized institution.  Surprisingly little work has considered what happens in between – when transaction costs exist but recourse to hierarchical institution is barred.  This paper uses transaction cost analysis to hypothesize how collaboration between corporations and environmental stakeholder groups will be structured. 

Terlaak, A. & King A. 2006. The Effect of Certification with the ISO 9000 Quality Management Standard: A Signaling Approach. Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 60(4): 579-602

Abstract: Theory suggests that certification with a management standard may reduce information asymmetries in supply chains and thereby generate a competitive advantage for certified firms. This article uses an 11-year panel of U.S. manufacturing facilities to test whether certification with the ISO 9000 Quality Management Standard generates a competitive advantage.  Results suggest that certified facilities grow faster after certification, and that operational improvements do not account for this growth.  Results also indicate that the growth effect is greater when buyers have greater difficulty acquiring information about suppliers.

King, A., Lenox, M. & Terlaak, A.  2005. The Strategic Use of Decentralized Institutions: Exploring Certification with The ISO 14001 Management Standard. Academy of Management Journal, 48(6): 1091-1106

Abstract:  In this paper, we respond to calls by previous researchers to clarify the function of decentralized institutions by analyzing the strategic motives of individual actors.  We investigate an important type of decentralized institution – certified management standards – and theorize that firms will use these institutions to reduce problems that might arise with exchange partners that lack information or fear opportunism.  We test this theory using the pattern of certification with the ISO 14001 management standard. 

Lenox, M. & King, A. 2004. Prospects for Developing Absorptive Capacity Through Internal Information Provision. Strategic Management Journal. 25(4),331-345

Abstract: Theories of absorptive capacity propose that knowledge gained from prior experience facilitates the identification, selection, and implementation of related profitable practices. Researchers have investigated how managers may develop absorptive capacity by building internal knowledge stocks, but few have focused on the distribution of this knowledge within the firm and the role managers play in administering information to organizational subunits. In this paper, we explore the degree to which managers can develop absorptive capacity by directly providing information to agents in the organization that might potentially adopt a new practice. We find that the effectiveness of managerial information provision depends on the degree to which potential adopters have information from other sources. We find that information from previous adopters and past events reduces the effect of information provision, while experience with related practices amplifies it. Our research helps clarify when absorptive capacity may provide a sustained competitive advantage.

King, A. & Tucci, C. 2002. Incumbent Entry into New Market Niches: The Role of Experience in the Creation of Dynamic Capabilities. Lead Article in Management Science. 48(2):171-186.

Abstract: Increasingly, technological innovation creates markets for new products and services. To survive, firms must respond to these new markets. How do firms develop the capabilities necessary to succeed in such changing conditions? Some suggest that experience with previous entry builds such capabilities. Others suggest that capabilities arise from experience producing and selling to existing markets. The role of managers is also debated. Some argue that experience with existing markets causes managers to miss entry opportunities. Others argue that managers enter new markets when their firm possesses the experience needed to compete effectively.

In this paper, we explore these issues by investigating entry patterns in the disk-drive industry. We investigate the effect of experience in existing markets and experience with previous market entry. We find that experience in previous markets increased the probability that a firm would enter a new market. We show that this experience had greater value if the firm entered the new market. We infer that managers chose to enter these markets to obtain this increase in value.

King, A. & Lenox, M. 2002. Exploring the Locus of Profitable Pollution Reduction. Management Science. 48(2):289-299.

Abstract: In this paper, we explore the locus of profitable pollution reduction. We propose that managers underestimate the full value of some means of pollution reduction and so under-exploit these means. Based on evidence from previous studies, we argue that waste prevention often provides unexpected innovation offsets, and that onsite waste treatment often provides unexpected cost. We use statistical methods to test the direction and significance of the relationship between the various means of pollution reduction and profitability. We find strong evidence that waste prevention leads to financial gain, but we find no evidence that firms profit from reducing pollution by other means. Indeed, we find evidence that the benefits of waste prevention alone are responsible for the observed association between lower emissions and profitability.
King, A. & Shaver, M. 2001.

Are Aliens Green? Assessing Foreign Establishments’ Environmental Conduct in the U.S. Strategic Management Journal, 22(11): 244-256.

Abstract: Previous research has found that foreign-owned establishments often lack specific capabilities needed to respond to local business conditions and are held to a higher standard by local stakeholders. These establishments compensate, however, by possessing offsetting capabilities such as technological excellence. In this article, we investigate how these conflicting forces shape the environmental conduct of foreign-owned facilities. Using data from the Environmental Protection Agency, we find that foreign-owned establishments generate more waste yet manage more waste than U.S.-owned establishments. We also find evidence that both domestic and foreign-owned firms generate more waste if they operate multiple facilities across multiple jurisdictions in the United States.

King, A. & Lenox, M. 2001. Does it Really Pay to be Green? The Journal of Industrial Ecology, 5(1): 105-116.

Abstract: Previous empirical work suggests that firms with high environmental performance tend to be profitable, but questions persist about the nature of the relationship. Does stronger environmental performance really lead to better financial performance, or is the observed relationship the outcome of some other underlying firm attribute? Does it pay to have clean-running facilities or to have facilities in relatively clean industries? To explore these questions, we analyze 652 U.S. manufacturing firms over the time period 1987±1996. Although we find evidence of an association between lower pollution and higher financial valuation, we find that a firm's fixed characteristics and strategic position might cause this association. Our findings suggest that "When does it pay to be green?" may be a more important question than "Does it pay to be green?"

King, A. & Lenox, M. 2001. Lean and Green?  An Empirical Examination of the Relationship between Lean Production and Environmental Performance. Production and Operations Management, 10(3): 244-257.

Abstract: Lean production may have a significant public good spillover-improved environmental performance. However, empirical evidence of the link between lean production practices and environmental performance has not resolved the nature of the relationship. To explore this issue, we conduct an empirical analysis of the environmental performance of 17,499 U.S. manufacturing establishments during the time period 1991-1996. We find that those establishments that adopt the quality management standard ISO 9000 are more likely to adopt the environmental management standard ISO 14000. We also find strong evidence that lean production, as measured by ISO 9000 adoption and low chemical inventories, is complementary to waste reduction and pollution reduction.

King, A. & Lenox M. 2000. Industry Self-Regulation without Sanctions: The Chemical Industry's Responsible Care Program. Academy of Management Journal, 43(4): 698-716.

Abstract: Industry self-regulation—the voluntary association of firms to control their collective action—has been proposed as a complement to government regulation. Proponents argue that the establishment of such structures may institutionalize environmental improvement, and critics suggest that without explicit sanctions, such structures will fall victim to opportunistic behavior. In a study of the Chemical Manufacturers Association's Responsible Care Program, we investigate the predictions of these two contradictory perspectives. Our findings highlight the potential for opportunism to overcome the isomorphic pressures of even powerful self-regulatory institutions and suggest that effective industry self-regulation is difficult to maintain without explicit sanctions.

King, A. 2000. Organizational Response to Environmental Regulation: Punctuated Change or Autogenesis?  Business Strategy and the Environment, 4 (9): 224-238.

Abstract: Theory predicts that when faced with threatening new conditions, managers often attempt to preserve the status quo by creating a buffer between the organization and the outside world. This paper presents evidence that in response to new water pollution regulation, managers indeed created buffers of technology and personnel, but in some organizations this very equipment and personnel initiated a process of incremental change that led to better environmental protection, more efficient production, and in a few cases, entirely new product and production strategies. For public policy, this research suggests that environmental regulators should allow companies time and flexibility to learn and experiment. For organizational theory, this research suggests a link between punctuated-equilibrium models of organizational dynamics (Tushman and Romanelli, 1985) and theories of self-organizing systems (Drazin and Sandelands, 1992). That is, management may respond to external changes by attempting to preserve the status quo, but in so doing influence internal deep structures that then cause organizations to gradually evolve to different behaviours and shapes.

Lenox, M., King, A. & Ehrenfeld, J. 2000. An Assessment of Design-for-Environment Practices in Leading U.S. Electronics Firms, Interfaces. 30(3): 83-94.

Abstract: A growing number of managers believe that addressing environmental impacts in product-design decisions has tangible advantages to firms. Yet many firms struggle to diffuse design-for-environment (DfE) practices across their product-development teams. Four leading electronics firms' attempts to adopt DfE suggest that the establishment of highly interconnected, internal information networks may be a robust diffusion strategy. Technically competent centers acting as clearinghouses of companywide information relevant to environmental design and coordinated with specialists on individual product-design teams seem to be an effective organizational structure for diffusing DfE. Internal information networks reduce the cost to designers of assessing environmental costs and benefits and thus lower the motivational barriers of product managers. Environmental design tools may be a component of successful DfE practice but do not seem to be sufficient in themselves. The complexity of environmental issues requires an approach that continually generates new information. Dense information networks allow pockets of expertise to form in response to ever-changing needs.

King, A. 1999. Retrieving and Transferring Embodied Data: Implications for Management of Interdependence within Organizations. Management Science, 45(7): 918-935. 

Abstract: This research helps to link theories of sticky information with organizational design and governance. It suggests that information embodied in process material can allow downstream tasks to uncover information about upstream tasks. It shows that downstream operators can use this information to negotiate interdependence problems with upstream operators. Data presented in this article begin to uncover when such information retrieval and exchange occurs, and how managers can encourage it. Finally, the article discusses implications for theories of operational design and governance.

King, A. 1995. Avoiding Ecological Surprise: Lessons from Long Standing Communities. Academy of Management Review, 20(4): 961-985.

Abstract: Increasingly ecologists have recognized the importance of sudden and unexpected changes in the natural environment—often called ''surprises.'' Organizational scholars have not developed a theory of how to avoid ecological surprise. This article suggests one way to develop such a theory. Using ecology, systems analysis, and a historical comparison of four communities, the article concludes that organizing and managing natural resources in part as community property can play a central role in avoiding surprises.

King, A. 1992. Innovation from Differentiation: Pollution Control Departments and Innovation in the Printed Circuit Industry. IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management, 42(3): 270-277.

Abstract: Theory predicts that managers will create specialized boundary-spanning departments to insulate a firm from changing surrounding conditions. Theory also predicts such insulating structures will inhibit adaptation. I find that in response to changing water-pollution regulation, top managers indeed created specialized pollution-control departments to insulate the existing process, but some of these departments acted not as insulators but as conduits for information and thereby helped both to improve the efficiency of the production process and to reduce pollution. The special role of these departments allowed unique access to and perspective on information from inside and outside the organization and gave them an incentive to use this information to improve fore processes. Thus my research suggests that pollution-control departments may belong to a class of boundary spanners that represent a special case for organizational design



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