Medicine, Science & Technology

The multiplicity of organizing visions

Research has shown that information systems adoption decisions are often influenced by organizing visions. Organizing visions provide a legitimation for technology related decision-making and involve a range of influences and perceptions from
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  Contents lists available at ScienceDirect Industrial Marketing Management  journal homepage: The multiplicity of organizing visions Susan Standing a, ⁎ , Craig Standing a , Peter E.D. Love b , Denise Gengatharen a a Centre for Innovative Practice, School of Business and Law, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia b  School of Civil and Mechanical Engineering, Curtin University, Bentley, Western Australia, Australia A B S T R A C T Research has shown that information systems adoption decisions are often in fl uenced by organizing visions.Organizing visions provide a legitimation for technology related decision-making and involve a range of in- fl uences and perceptions from consultants, industry bodies, policy makers and other  fi rms. This paper is con-cerned with identifying the mechanisms that underlie the structure of an organizing vision. A range of casestudies and a morphogenetic approach, underpinned by critical realist philosophy, are used to demonstrate howorganizations respond to organizing visions and how di ff  erent response communities emerge. We identify andexplain the characteristics of the shaper, resistor, coerced, follower and ambivalent communities, their re-lationship with an organizing vision and the importance of pre-existing conditions. 1. Introduction The adoption of information and communication technologies (ICT)in organizations is a key research theme in information systems. It isimportant because information systems are often major investmentsthat have the potential to transform an organization's productivity andbe a source of competitive advantage (Drnevich&Croson, 2013;Mithas, Tafti,&Mitchell, 2013). Research over a number of years hasidenti fi ed the importance of a group of related concepts that includesfashion waves, fads, and organizing visions in driving and facilitatingthe adoption of technologies (Wang&Ramiller, 2009). These conceptsare associated with social cognition, community discourse and the le-gitimation of technology adoption decisions (Wang&Ramiller, 2009).The theoretical perspective taken in the study is one that drawsupon the theory of organizational visions (Swanson&Ramiller, 1997,2004). According to Swanson and Ramiller (2004, p.556), an orga- nizing vision  “ is a construction in discourse that emerges from a het-erogeneous collective consisting of such parties as technology vendors,consultants, industry pundits, prospective adopters, business and trade journalists, and academics. ”  These actors all have a role in forming thecommunity discourse around a technology innovation. The organiza-tional discourse consists of relationships between social and technicalstructures and information systems development. The discourse formsan ordering process that re fl ects and shapes organizational strategy,process change and technology adoption (Doolin, 2003;McLeod&Doolin, 2012). An organizing vision therefore, is a sensemaking process that an organization engages with, not only to enableadoption decisions on a speci fi c technology, but to determine the roleand organizational contribution of the technology (Berente, Hansen,Pike,&Bateman, 2011).The technology that is the focus of this study is electronic market-places. An electronic marketplace is described as a networked in-formation system that serves as an enabling infrastructure for buyersand sellers to exchange information, transact, and perform other ac-tivities related to the transaction (Chien, Chen,&Hsu, 2012; Standing,Standing,&Love, 2010). An electronic marketplace has the ability toimpact upon di ff  erent areas within the organization such as an in-dividual business unit, the supply chain and customer relationshipmanagement and facilitate intra organizational communication andknowledge sharing. In the case of business-to-business (B2B) transac-tions an e-marketplace is also an inter-organizational system. Electronicmarketplaces frequently use online auctions mechanisms. Electronicmarketplaces were chosen for this study as the type of informationsystem because of their intra and inter-organizational signi fi cance andbecause of the surrounding discourse related to the bene fi ts and issuesin their adoption.There is a wealth of research in relation to technology adoptionmodels generally (Venkatesh&Bala, 2008; Venkatesh, Thong, Chan,Hu,&Brown, 2011). A limitation of these technology adoption theoriesis that they apply at the individual level and do not fully consider the “ group think ”  that is such a force in organizing vision theory. Orga-nizing vision theory is still developing and signi fi cant gaps exist in itsconceptual coherence (De Vaujany, Carton, Mitev,&Romeyer, 2014).For example, organizing visions have substantially been viewed as apositive phenomenon in fl uencing technology adoption decisions butthey can also in fl uence decisions to reject a technology (Kaganer, 3 December 2016; Received in revised form 14 August 2017; Accepted 17 August 2017 ⁎ Corresponding author.  E-mail addresses: (S. Standing), (C. Standing), (P.E.D. Love), (D. Gengatharen). Industrial Marketing Management 66 (2017) 196–204Available online 19 August 20170019-8501/ © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. M R  Pawlowski,&Wiley-Paton, 2010). The role of organizing visions incircumscribing use of a technology has not been fully explored nor hasits in fl uence on the scope and extent of adoption been fully in-vestigated.This paper aims to examine how organizing visions are interpretedby organizations. Firstly, the paper examines organizing vision theory.It then presents the details of the case study design and  fi ndings using acritical realist perspective and a morphogenetic approach (Archer,1995). A conceptual framework is presented that relates organizingvisions with organizational approaches to e-marketplace use and  fi nallythe implications of the study are discussed. 2. Theoretical perspectives Various models have examined the adoption of technology. Theoryof reasoned action (TRA) takes into account an individual's positive ornegative feelings towards using an action and considers the in fl uence of subjective norm in the sense of considering what other people who havein fl uence on the individual think about the behaviour or action(Fishbein&Ajzen, 1975). Davis (1989) applied the theory to using technology and found both factors to be signi fi cant. TechnologyAdoption Model (TAM) does not include attitude but centres on per-ceived usefulness and perceived ease of use, with a later version of TAM(TAM2) including subjective norm (Venkatesh&Davis, 2000). TAMapplies at the individual level in relation to technology adoption. TheTheory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) (Ajzen, 1991) has three core con-structs: Attitude Towards Behaviour, Subjective Norm and PerceivedBehavioural Control. The latter factor examines the perceived ease ordi ffi culty of performing the behaviour. TPB has been applied to tech-nology adoption (Harrison, Mykytyn,&Riemen-schneider, 1997) but isagain focused on the individual in organizations. The core constructs onInnovation Di ff  usion Theory (IDT) have been applied to technologyadoption (Moore&Benbasat, 1996) and took into account relative ad-vantage, ease of use, image, visibility, compatibility, results and vo-luntariness of use. Although innovation di ff  usion has value it does notexplain how individual organizations are in fl uenced to adopt a tech-nology.Organization vision theory is di ff  erent to other technology adoptionmodels because it considers the discourse surrounding a technology inthe marketplace and the role this has on the organizational decision toadopt it. It de-emphasises rational analysis of the technology at theindividual level and highlights the importance of following a dominantperception in the marketplace and the in fl uence this exerts on organi-zations. This research approach it could be argued better explainsadoption as it relies on the power of social cognition and its relationshipwith inter-organizational di ff  usion of an innovative technology(Oliveira&Martins, 2011). Organizing visions have substantially beenviewed as phenomena that work to create a rationale for the adoptionof a technology where a  “ diverse inter organizational community cre-ates and employs an  organising vision  of an IS innovation, that is centralto its early, as well as later, di ff  usion ”  (Swanson&Ramiller, 1997, p.458). Organizing vision theory and research on management fashionassociates IT innovation and technology adoption with a communitydiscourse (Wang&Ramiller, 2009). Research on organizational fashionproposes that fashion occurs in a wave from innovation to in-stitutionalization and is in fl uenced by community learning(Abrahamson&Fairchild, 1999; Baskerville&Myers, 2009;Gill&Bhattacherhee, 2009). A diverse range of actors contribute to thecommunity discourse surrounding a technology and their in fl uence ontechnology di ff  usion and organizational change has not been fully ex-plored (de Vaujany, Carton, Dominguez-Péry,&Vaast, 2013). Swanson (2010), for example, proposes that IT consultants increase the rate of technology adoption and act as supportive change agents.Organizing vision theory recognises that community discourse oc-curs through interactions with media, community members and in theways IT is used to bring about organizational change (Swanson, 2010;Swanson&Ramiller, 1997). In particular, the use of a technologywithin an organization is informed by the views and past experiences of organizational decision makers, industry sector norms, consultants'opinions, technology vendors and trade and business journalists(Pollock&Williams, 2009). A community discourse also embodies aninforming discourse driven by the di ff  usion of a technology(Gill&Bhattacherhee, 2009). Social networks associated with a tech-nology allow organizations to assess new practices (Cheng, 2010). Re-cent developments in organizing vision research have investigated howa community can in fl uence the organizing vision and the discourse thattakes place to enable learning (Wang&Ramiller, 2009). The discourseis segmented into three evolutionary dimensions beginning withknowledge about a technology, followed by reasons for its use and a fi nal dominant discourse around the strategies and capabilities invol-ving the technology. The sequential evolution and ordering of a dis-course suggests that analytical and experiential knowledge of thetechnology is added to the community discourse, transmitted throughcommunity networks and across organizational boundaries. Although,this presents a basis for understanding the development of a discourse itdoes not explain why some organizations adopt the technology whilstothers do not. However, links between the community discourse andorganizational discourse highlight the existence of relationships be-tween organizational structures and social process (Fairclough, 2005)and the need to consider both activities and structures.Consultants' activities play a part in the development of organizingvisions and they often act as change agents for technology innovation(Swanson, 2010; Wang, Potter, Naim,&Beevor, 2011). A consultant'scontribution to the innovation process can occur across  fi ve broad areasof organizational activity: business strategy; technology assessment;business process improvement; systems integration; and business sup-port services. Their prominent role in technology di ff  usion can some-times be problematic for organizations since they may  “ contribute moreto mindless, than to mindful innovation with IT ”  (Swanson, 2010, p.25). The reason proposed is that when consultants promote standar-dized IT solutions across the sector normative pressure for adoptionincreases. An example of this is the widespread adoption of SAP forenterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions (Pollock&Williams,2009). A consequence of standardized or modular solutions is that fi rmsare unable to di ff  erentiate themselves from others: as Swanson (2010)concludes, consultants may be best employed by  fi rms looking to catch-up with IT innovations rather than by those aiming to be sector leaders.The implication is that consultants are likely to suggest what will bewell received by a client, or what has been accepted by others. Thisconstrains the consultant from suggesting more radical solutions oralternatives and reinforces their role in creating institutional iso-morphism. 3. Methodology The following explains why a critical realist approach is taken andhow this links with the selection of the multi-case study method. Thereis growing support for the case study method in studies that take acritical realist view (Easton, 2010; Wynn&Williams, 2012) since itenables the interrelationship of phenomena and context to be ex-amined. Critical realism provides an ontological basis to examine ex-periences, events, the structures and the causal mechanisms that un-derlie them (Bhaskar, 1978; Leca&Naccache, 2006; Mingers, 2004;Pawson&Tilley, 2011) and explains economic rationale (Runde, 1998). The concepts of organizational change (morphogenesis) or reproduc-tion (morphostasis) developed by Archer (1995) recognise that socialstructures, agents and context are interrelated and have to be con-sidered simultaneously. The morphogenetic/morphostasis approach isused to identify change/reproduction in organizational structuresthrough the interrelationships between agents, social and culturalstructures in B2B and e-marketplace structures. Reproduction in thiscontext means little or no change.  S. Standing et al.  Industrial Marketing Management 66 (2017) 196–204 197  Context provides a means to identify the structures, agents andcausal mechanisms that have shaped a situation and a means to dis-tinguish pre-existing conditions from present activities (Archer, 1995).The inseparable linkages between agents and structures represents ananalytical dualism where the emergent properties (causal mechanisms)of structures and agents interact with each other to produce non-pre-dictable, although explicable, changes over time (Archer, 1995).An understanding of organizational context o ff  ers a means tohighlight interactions that produce di ff  erences in the use of a tech-nology (Danermark, Ekstr ӧ m, Jakobsen,&Karlsson, 2002; Sayer, 2010;Zhu, Kraemer,&Xu, 2006). The in fl uence of social structures, culturalstructures and agents in the use of a technology requires an examina-tion of the material aspects (functionality) of the technology and theconditions necessary to produce a speci fi c outcome (Mutch, 2010;Orlikowski, 2009). The ubiquitous nature of technology produces atight interweaving of the social and material. However, identifying thematerial properties of the technology helps uncover the relationalpowers between organizational structures, agents and the technology,and their impact on organizational change (Bygstad&Munkvold, 2011;Mutch, 2010). Archer (1995, p. 161) suggests that work should be done to discover how structural in fl uences are transmitted to particularagents, in determinant positions, and the strategic combinations thatresult in morphogenesis rather than morphostasis. In line with this, thepaper investigates B2B e-marketplace participation and the speci fi cconditions that in fl uence e-marketplace use and its organizational valueby identifying causal mechanisms, their powers and liabilities. Hence, acritical realist approach that takes into account the real and perceived isan appropriate methodology for this study that deals with organizingvisions. It enables the causal mechanisms within a given context to beidenti fi ed to explain why events happen.To provide su ffi cient evidence for the research seven cases wereinvestigated. The investigation of seven cases provides opportunities touncover di ff  erences in the internal interpretation of external events(Yin, 2009). Yin (2009) suggests that 6 – 10 cases are suitable for ex-ploring di ff  erences in context. E-marketplace providers are selected forthe case studies because they are the ones adopting and using the e-marketplaces and hence they can be investigated in relation to the in- fl uence of organizing visions. 3.1. Data collection Case data illustrates complex interactions between people, pro-cesses, organizations and context. Taking a small number of cases en-ables each case to be examined in terms of history and context, and takeinto account speci fi c experiences of the situation, the processes, activ-ities, and episodes of events (Sayer, 2010). The explanatory nature of the study allows adherence to six stages of case study research proposedby Danermark, Ekstr ӧ m, Jakobsen and Karlsson (2002 pp. 109 – 110): 1)a description of the situation and relevant theories; 2) analysis of thephenomena to identify the components to be studied; 3) redescriptionof data from hypothetical concepts; 4) retroductive analysis to uncoverfundamental mechanisms; 5) comparison between theories and dataand  fi nally; 6) contextualization of the identi fi ed mechanisms. Theprocess is not necessarily sequential but continual description, resolu-tion, redescription, retroduction, comparisons and contextualizationoccurs in order to verify and explain causal signi fi cance relative to ageneral situation (Runde, 1998). The research moved between de-scription and abstract analysis to reconstruction of the basic enablingconditions at di ff  erent organizational levels and included external, in-ternal, and organizational sub-groups (Blundel, 2007).E-marketplaces were initially identi fi ed through the database of which maintains a list of international e-market-places that are trading successfully in the business-to-business (B2B) orbusiness-to-government (B2G) area (these e-marketplaces are referredto as being B2B throughout this paper). The e-marketplaces representedin this database cover diverse industries and variation in the types of services o ff  ered to participants. E-marketplaces operating in Australiawere selected as potential participants for since they are operatingunder the same cultural and economic conditions. E-marketplace pro-viders were included in the study for their knowledge of the e-mar-ketplace technology and buyer and supplier reasons for adoption as thislinks to the role of organizing visions. The organizations selected werecontacted regarding participation and all agreed to take part.The case organizations represent organizations (in terms of budgetand employees) with experience of procuring goods or services via B2Be-marketplaces, international e-marketplace providers, and organiza-tions that conduct both e-marketplace procurement and e-marketplaceprovision. Organizations with large procurement budgets are morelikely to use an e-marketplace (Hackney, Jones,&Lösch, 2007) and e-marketplace providers can provide insights into their organization andparticipant organizations. Representatives from the organization wereselected based on a high level of managerial experience and knowledgeof the procurement process and stakeholder requirements. The in-formants held positions within the organization with job titles such asDirector Australasia, Regional Vice President, Procurement Manager,Chief Procurement O ffi cer, General Manager E-Business Solutions, As-sociate Director Procurement Systems and Supply Chain Manager. Sixinformants were interviewed from each organization to provide mul-tiple perspectives. Diversity in the case organizations was representedby the type of organization (government and private).Data was gathered via semi-structured interviews with participantsfrom each organization (Yin, 2009). The use of semi-structured inter-views allowed the informants to put forward their views on a range of matters connected with e-marketplace adoption and use. Informantshad the opportunity to discuss any factors that they identi fi ed as im-pacting upon the success or failure of using an e-marketplace from anorganizational and personal perspective.The discussion focused on how e-marketplace implementation hador had not occurred, what di ffi culties or successes were encounteredand attitudes towards e-marketplace trading in general. The methodsused to evaluate e-marketplace participation, whether formal or in-formal, were also discussed. The questions provided considerable scopefor the informant to expand answers and to provide additional in-formation, raise concerns or highlight issues. Interviews were recordedand lasted between 45 and 60 min. Informants were sent the interviewtranscript to review and were contacted a few days later for additionalcomments or feedback.The fi nal seven participant organizations consisted of three from theresources sector, one e-marketplace provider specializing in mining andrelated industries, one e-marketplace provider with reverse auctionspecialization and two Australian state government e-marketplaces(Tables 1 and 2). To understand the circumstances in which organiza-tions do, or do not, adopt e-marketplace use the interview discussionsfocused on the informants' perceptions of e-marketplace technology anduse, organizational value of e-marketplace participation and experi-ences of e-marketplaces. 3.2. Data analysis Informant interviews were the primary source of data used foranalysis. Supplementary data such as organizational web sites and re-ports, and media publications which form part of the organizationaldiscourse were also considered. Data for analysis was imported into asoftware package specially designed to aid in the coding and compar-ison of qualitative data. Conceptual abstraction from case data andliterature produced themes for the coding. The themes were developedand analysed to identify organizational structures, agents, mechanismsand outcomes.Initially, broad rules for data inclusion in a conceptual theme wereformulated but these were re fi ned as data analysis continued. Data fromthe interview transcripts and any supplementary data were coded to arelevant theme, or themes if appropriate. Ideas or concepts not  S. Standing et al.  Industrial Marketing Management 66 (2017) 196–204 198  captured in the initial coding were assigned to additional themes withdescriptive conceptual titles. Contextual case data from each case wasanalysed to support or reject the relevance of themes and identify thestructures and mechanisms involved in causing events. The re fi nementof the rules for inclusion in a theme as data analysis continued pro-duced some changes in coding through the development of new themes,subthemes and cross coding. Continual iteration between abstractionand concretization of the data strengthened the links between data,themes, outcomes and theories (Sayer, 2010). 4. Findings Case organizations with contextual similarities were grouped torepresent three organizational types: independent e-marketplacevendor; Australian state government as an e-marketplace provider ande-marketplace participant; and e-marketplace buyer from the miningand resources sector. 4.1. E-marketplace vendor  The two e-marketplace vendor organizations have headquarters inAustralia and operate international e-marketplaces. Organization A wasfounded in the UK in 2000 by two experienced procurement and buyingmanagers. The Asia Paci fi c branch is based in Sydney, New South Walesand has been operating in Australia since 2000. Organization A pro-vides an online tender and quotation system and reverse auction ser-vices for  fi xed monthly fees or a  fi xed fee per auction. Access to a widevariety of goods and services are available from participant organiza-tions. Organization B has been operating since 2001. It was formedfrom a joint agreement by 20 leading mining and mineral organizationsto develop an electronic trading system between them and their sup-pliers. The e-marketplace vendor operates independently of thefounding members but primarily serves industries involved in miningand related areas. The e-marketplace operates globally and has o ffi cesthroughout the world. Services are provided to registered users on a feebasis and include catalogues, directories, and requests for quotes, pro-posals and bids. There are over 60,000 suppliers and 1500 buyerstrading more than USD $20 billion worth of goods and services throughthe e-marketplace (Emarketservices, 2014).Each e-marketplace vendor provides an e-marketplace platform thatintegrates participants' information systems on a web based system.Participants use their existing technology and communication infra-structure to access the e-marketplace. The functionality o ff  ered by thee-marketplace varies by provider and a range of standardized optionsare usually available for participant selection.The two vendors' (A and B) perspectives on how organizing visionsimpact on e-marketplace decision processes are summarised in Table 3.The key features of a critical realist approach are used to explain thesituation before considering e-marketplaces (pre-existing structures),the events and actions that took place (production), the forces that ledto little or no change and what resulted (reproduction), and whensigni fi cant changes took place what in fl uenced that and what resulted(transformation).Organizational culture was seen as a factor that in fl uenced a  fi rm'swillingness to change. Those organizations with a more open and in-novative culture were more likely to experiment and take a risk on e-marketplaces. An organization's satisfaction with existing business-to-business relationships and their views on e-marketplaces in relation towhether they are seen as a positive or negative in fl uence impacteddecisions. Vendor (A) would usually assess whether the interested or-ganization was risk averse or was prepared to experiment and took thisinto account in their recommendations on how to use the e-market-place. Vendor B mentioned that dominant market positions of largebuyers created coercive pressure for suppliers to participate. If   fi rmswere risk averse, had a negative view of e-marketplaces or couldn't seea reason to change their procurement methods then they would onlyuse e-marketplaces for minor goods and services. Those that embracede-marketplaces changed their views and beliefs and changed the natureof relationships in the supply chain. These  fi rms recognised the in-formative role of the vendor. 4.2. Australian state government - e-marketplace provider and participant  The uptake of e-marketplace use in Australia lags behind that of North America and Europe in the private sector, but the two stategovernments represented in the study have been involved in e- Table 1 E-marketplace providers.Organization Type of E-marketplaceTrading functions Region of operationsGoods traded Types of usersAFounded 2000Employees 122Private Reverse auction Australia, UK Variety of goods and services (e.g. Equipment,machines, o ffi ce furniture, stationary)Variety of buyers and sellersBFounded 2001Employees 300Consortium Online order, RFQ,proposals, bids,cataloguesGlobal Oil, gas, core mining processes and construction Mining, metals and processingcompanies and their suppliers.C> 5000employeesState government(Australia)Online order, RFQ,tender, catalogues, bidsAustralia Variety of goods and services required bygovernment agencies. (e.g. School equipmentand supplies, hospital equipment)Government agencies and theirsuppliersD> 8000employeesState government(Australia)Online order, RFQ,tender, catalogues, bidsAustralia Variety of goods and services required bygovernment agencies. (e.g. School equipmentand supplies, hospital equipment)Government agencies and theirsuppliers Table 2 E-marketplace trading organizations.Organization Type of organization Industry Trading operations Goods traded through e-marketplaceE7000 employeesPrivate company Aluminium products Global operations Goods and services (e.g. Gas, machines, truck tyres, o ffi ceequipment)F4300 employeesPrivate company Mineral exploration, extraction andre fi ningGlobal operations Goods and services (e.g. Energy supplies, o ffi ce equipment, minesite machinery)G3000 employeesPrivate company Gas and oil exploration and extraction Global operations Commodities  S. Standing et al.  Industrial Marketing Management 66 (2017) 196–204 199  marketplace development for over 10 years. Pre-2011 State DepartmentC, in State C, was responsible for  fi ve areas of state governance:treasury; revenue; procurement; shared services; building managementand works. It split into two agencies mid-2011 with the Department of Finance (DF) controlling government procurement for State C. The DF'svision takes a whole of government approach to providing shared ser-vices and centralizing procurement activities. The possible gains in ef- fi ciency, probity and risk management through the use of electronicchannels has in fl uenced the vision of a single entry point for all relatedstate government/community e-sourcing and supply interaction.Organization D, in State D, is responsible for government services,technology and administration. The state's e-marketplace was im-plemented in 2002 through the Department of Public Works andServices but now falls within the remit of State Organization D. To ful fi lthe state government's e-commerce and procurement policies organi-zation D has been working towards the centralization of procurementand the development of the government portal, however the directionof future policies is currently uncertain. The government procurementportal provides access to state contracts, electronic tendering, somehuman resource management services and training opportunities.Guidelines and frameworks developed for government procurementand for suppliers are easily accessible. A wide variety of goods andservices are traded through the e-marketplace to meet the needs of stateagency buyers.The two state governments had an agenda to act as leaders of change and in the development of on-line procurement knowledge inthe business sector (Table 4). Even so because the government couldmandate the adoption of e-marketplace procurement some thought theyhad coercive power. This meant that supplier  fi rms had a choice, eitherrefuse to be involved or give it a go and learn from the experience. 4.3. Mining and resources e-marketplace buyer organizations Large organizations operating in the mining and resources sector inAustralia took part in the study. Organization E is one of the largestproducers of aluminium in the world. Its alumina production inAustralia accounts for 11% of world demand and employs over 7000people. The Australian branch of the organization has been using e-marketplaces in B2B transactions for over 12 years. Organization F is aleader in the exploration, extraction and processing of mineral re-sources with operations spanning the globe. It maintains a strong pre-sence in Australia and North America and has signi fi cant businesses inSouth America, Asia, Europe and southern Africa. The organization'smajor products are aluminium, copper, diamonds, gold, coal, uranium,industrial minerals and iron ore. It has also been involved in B2B e-marketplace trading since 2000. Organization G is a WesternAustralian, gas and oil exploration and production company that hasbeen operating since 1954. It is a world leader in the production of lique fi ed natural gas and natural gas production, lique fi ed petroleumgas, condensate and oil. Various project partnerships with global pro-ducers such as Shell, BHP Billiton and Chevron have been formedworldwide.In 2000 Organization E and Organization F joined other large or-ganizations from the mining sector as founding members of a consortiae-marketplace to serve the resources sector. This was initiated as part of the organizations' e-commerce strategies. Trade through the e-market-place, within procurement activities, is a regular occurrence for bothorganizations. Organization G is not a member of the consortia and usesan e-marketplace irregularly.The senior supply chain managers and procurement managers inOrganizations E and F could clearly de fi ne what e-marketplace useinvolved and articulate its role within organizational procurementpractice. Organization G had a vaguer e-marketplace de fi nition and didnot envisage regular, e-marketplace participation in their procurementactivities. The di ff  ering e-marketplace de fi nitions indicate levels of maturity in e-marketplace use and variations in the community dis-course that exist in an industry sector.The culture of the buyer organization was important in creating theconditions to take a risk and use e-marketplaces (Table 5). An openattitude to e-marketplaces was also important. When procurement wasseen as a strategic function in the organization the Organizations(E,F,G) were more likely to adopt e-marketplaces. As the buyers had adominant market position that created a power asymmetry that putpressure on suppliers to participate. Buyers stressed the cost e ffi cienciesof e-marketplaces and many suppliers changed their approach but someorganizations were not prepared to change even under pressure. 4.4. Types of responses to organizing visions The fi ndings highlight the presence of di ff  erent types of responses toorganizing visions (Table 6). These types are not simply adopters andnon-adopters but illustrate  fi ve alternative group reactions to e-mar-ketplace use. 4.4.1. Shaper community  The shaper community represents technology adopters able to in-stigate organizational change at a macro level. It is prepared to takerisks and demonstrates an experimental, or trial and error, approach toadopting new technology and accepts change in business practices.Early adopters of a technology in an industry sector, for exampleOrganizations E and F, belong in this group. The shaper communityin fl uences the organizing vision for the technology at an early stage of  Table 3 Vendor perceptions of organizing visions (Organizations A and B).Pre-existing Structures Production(approach)Reproduction(forces for little or no change - morphostasis)Transformation(Morphogenesis)Organizational culture Vendor's conciliatory approach to organizing vision of client “ Why change ”  attitude? Adopted e-marketplaceB2B supplier relationships Vendor capability to build B2B trading network Fixed negative e-marketplace beliefs Change in organizational relationshipsE-marketplace beliefs Coercive power of buyer Procurement methods unchanged Vendor legitimation Table 4 Government perceptions of organizing visions (Organizations C and D).Pre-existing Structures Production(approach)Reproduction(forces for little or no change - morphostasis)Transformation(Morphogenesis)Government structure Coercive power of government E-marketplace beliefs remain unchanged E-marketplace legitimationSocial welfare agenda Political cynicism Procurement methods unchanged Capabilities expandedE-marketplace trading beliefs Educational role Standard procurement methods  S. Standing et al.  Industrial Marketing Management 66 (2017) 196–204 200
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