Fiduciaries and Family Firms: Integrating the Logics of Commerce and Family

Brooke Harrington, Vanessa M. Strike

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


Drawing on an 8-year ethnographic study, we analyze 65 interviews with family firm fiduciaries in 18 countries to examine the fiduciary’s role in re-integrating the logics of family and commerce within family firms. Our data identifies two sets of tasks that fiduciaries perform where competing institutional logics are beginning to dis-integrate: rationalization and stabilization. Our findings contribute to family business scholarship by showing that fiduciaries can play the integrative “man in the middle” role, integrating competing sets of assumptions, cognitions, emotions and practices into a functional whole. Moreover, we contribute to literature on institutional logics by mapping out how fiduciaries are able to straddle multiple logics – particularly those of commerce and family – allowing firms to remain robust in the face of change, particularly in leadership.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Seventy-eighth Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management
EditorsGuclu Atinc
Number of pages6
Place of PublicationBriar Cliff Manor, NY
PublisherAcademy of Management
Publication date2018
Article number18
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventThe Academy of Management Annual Meeting 2018: Improving Lives - Chicago, United States
Duration: 10 Aug 201814 Aug 2018
Conference number: 78


ConferenceThe Academy of Management Annual Meeting 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States
Internet address
SeriesAcademy of Management Proceedings

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