The role of spirituality in Islamic business networks: The case of internationalizing Turkish SMEs

Kurt, Y., Sinkovics, N. , Sinkovics, R. R. and Yamin, M. (2020) The role of spirituality in Islamic business networks: The case of internationalizing Turkish SMEs. Journal of World Business, 55(1), 101034. (doi: 10.1016/j.jwb.2019.101034)

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This paper sets out to investigate the role of religion and spirituality in a business network context, with an empirical focus on the international business development of Turkish SMEs. By drawing on the concept of homophily and tie strength, we argue that, while religion can act as a bridge and thus create a multitude of weak ties within a business network, spirituality can deepen these ties and make them stronger through increased emotional intensity, intimacy and reciprocal service. The data were collected from participants in two Islamic business associations in Turkey. The results suggest that spirituality indeed drives members’ commitment to the network and the presence of spirituality has a distinctive effect on members’ contributions to and demands on the network. More specifically, members who treat their network membership as an extension of their spiritual practice tend to mainly benefit from intangible resources, while members who view their shared religion as an entry point into the network seem to benefit from both tangible and intangible network resources. The findings have several theoretical and practical implications, including the introduction of the spirituality concept into the discussion of homophily and tie strength in business networks, and the role of home networks in the internationalization of SMEs.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:Financial support was received from the University of Manchester research support fund and the Alliance Manchester Business School (AMBS) Lord Alliance strategic research investment fund [LA-SRIF AA14179].
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Sinkovics, Professor Rudolf and Sinkovics, Dr Noemi
Authors: Kurt, Y., Sinkovics, N., Sinkovics, R. R., and Yamin, M.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > Adam Smith Business School > Management
Journal Name:Journal of World Business
ISSN (Online):1878-5573
Published Online:07 November 2019
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 The Authors
First Published:First published in Journal of World Business 55(1):101034
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons Licence

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