New article by Prof Keil in Journal of Management Studies
The article “Temporal Dynamics in Acquisition Behavior: The effect of Activity Load on Strategic Momentum, co-authored by Professor Keil with Yuval Deutsch (Schulich School of business at York University, Canada), Tomi Laamanen (University of St. Gallen, Switzerland), and Markku Maula, (Aalto University, Finland) has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Management Studies, a European based FT50 journal. The paper focuses on explanations of temporal patterns in acquisition behavior. Prior research drawing upon momentum theory suggests that acquisition experience leads to acquisition momentum in the form of a higher likelihood of subsequent acquisitions of the same type. However, this argument has been challenged theoretically and empirically. This new article reconciles the conflicting predictions and findings of prior research and extends momentum theory by incorporating activity load as a novel causal mechanism to both replicate the base finding and explain deviations from it. We find that a high activity load due to increased acquisition activity acts as a counterforce to momentum, decreasing the likelihood of subsequent acquisitions of the same type. Moreover, we also find that the interplay of routines, cognitive frames, and activity load causes companies to alternate between different types of acquisitions – from small to large and from large to small – as management engages in attention modulation to preserve momentum.