Using a sample of 172 Spanish family firms and two responders per firm, consisting of a family member and a non-family member (344 returned questionnaires), we examine the effects of internal social capital on organizational innovation. Building on the relational, cognitive, and structural view, and on social capital theory, we propose that internal networking relationships between family members (family social capital) and between non-family members (non-family social capital) in family firms facilitate innovation. Moreover, its benefits flow from the relationships among the firm’s internal groups. The results of structural equation models indicate that the social capital of both family members and non-family members has a direct and positive effect on innovation. Further, our findings provide evidence that non-family social capital is just as effective as family social capital for family firm innovation, establishing a new line of research from an empirical perspective. The findings also test whether social factors are key assets of family firm innovation.
Research Professor. Director at Learning Change Project – Research on society, culture, art, neuroscience, cognition, critical thinking, intelligence, creativity, autopoiesis, self-organization, rhizomes, complexity, systems, networks, leadership, sustainability, thinkers, futures ++
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