Approaching (inter-) actors in the business landscape

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Diffused interdependences and the centrality of interaction processes evidenced in research on business markets imply the need to re-examine some of the central concepts in marketing and to reflect on how research can address them. This particularly applies to the concept of actor that from an interaction perspective appears rather different from how it is generally intended in management and marketing. Two research traditions in particular − symbolic interactionism and the actor-network theory − can be related to the discussion of the approach to actors from the IMP perspective. In this paper, we first examine the traits that characterize actors in business relationships, in particular the variable entity of actors, their relational specificity, and their emergent nature. We then discuss the implications of these traits regarding how actors can be approached in empirical research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-179
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • business actors, interaction, business relationships, research methodology


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