Ownership Structure

An Empirical Examination of Ownership Structure in Family and Professionally Managed Firms“, by Catherine M. Daily (Dalton) of Ohio State University and Marc J. Dollinger of Indiana University, currently appears in the most cited articles list  in Family Business Review , based on citations to online articles from HighWire-hosted articles. Professor Dollinger has provided an additional perspective on the article:

Tell the story behind the article.  What prompted you to do this research and write this article? Do you have any specific memories about doing the research, writing or the review/publishing process that you would like to share?

I am an entrepreneur/small business professor so this was definitely in my domain. My co-author was a doctoral student and the time and I am happy to report she went on to write many more articles covering governance and entrepreneurship. I had just come off a successful study of minority small businesses and it opened my eyes to how these businesses were organized and governed. At the same time, agency theory was very popular in management studies. It was natural to play off the predictions of agency theory and see how they conformed to the data about family business.

Why do you think this research is important? Why are people reading it and who else should be exposed to it?

The main contribution would be that small family owned businesses are different! And as such these firms deserve a field/domain of study of their own. People are reading the article for a couple of reasons IMHO. One is that we had a definition and operationalization for family-owned business that worked. Second is that we published our scales so that others can use them. I think this is a big concern these days. Some scholars do not publish their scales and instead, copyright them and charge for their use. I am not a big fan of that model.

Give us a specific review of the impact of this article. What additional research has this article led to (either your own or other’s)?

After this article, I went on to do work on firm external relations and game theory. Catherine stayed in governance and organizational studies. We were both pleased to have the article published in Family Business Review. There were fewer outlets then for small business and family business research. It was quite a coup for us.

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