Trust and Control in Strategic Networks of SMEs

Fabio Antoldi, Daniele Cerrato, Antonio Angelo Larocca

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


This paper provides an analysis of the role played by trust and control in networks of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), with a focus on both their direct and interaction effects on network performance. To delve into the interplay between trust and control, we unpacked control mechanisms into three different forms: output, process and social control. Our hypotheses were tested on a sample of 58 Italian SME networks. Results show that successful cooperation requires trust-based relationships among entrepreneurs. Additionally, the adoption of output control mechanisms reinforces the positive trustperformance link, whereas a substitution effect exists between trust and both social and process control.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 40th Annual Conference of the Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventInstitute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (ISBE) Conference - Belfast, Northern Ireland
Duration: 8 Nov 20179 Nov 2017


ConferenceInstitute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (ISBE) Conference
CityBelfast, Northern Ireland


  • Control
  • Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises
  • Strategic Networks
  • Trust


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