Managing the hearts of boundary spanners: CEO organizational identification and international joint venture performance. By: Zhong, Bi-Juan; Gong, Yaping; Shenkar, Oded; Luo, Yadong; Xiao, Zhixing; Zhao, Shuming. Asia Pacific Journal of Management. Jul2021, p1-33.

Integrating boundary spanning and organizational identification theories, we posit that a boundary spanner’s organizational identification (i.e., the sense of oneness with an organization) is an important factor shaping inter-organizational relationships. We examined CEOs of international joint ventures (IJVs) as the boundary spanners in the Asia Pacific region by sampling 185 China-based IJVs. We found that organizational identification of an IJV’s CEO with a parent firm is positively related to cooperation between the venture and that parent, and this relationship is stronger when the level of goal differences between parents is higher. The cooperation between the foreign (but not local) parent and the IJV is in turn positively related to the IJV’s performance. This study extends extant research by revealing the role of a boundary spanner’s organizational identification in inter-organizational collaboration as well as inter-firm goal differences as a boundary condition for this role.