Call for Papers: Family Business & Regional Development

7th Latin America and European Meeting on Organizations Studies (LAEMOS 2018)

IAE Business School – Buenos Aires – Argentina (22nd to 24th March 2018)


Pedro Vázquez (FCE – Universidad Austral, Argentina)

Rodrigo Basco (Sheikh Saoud bin Khalid bin Khalid Al-Qassimi Chair in Family Business – American University of Sharjah)

Héctor Rocha (IAE, Argentina)


Family firms are the most common form of organization in the world (Bjuggren, et al., 2011; Faccio & Lang, 2002; Shanker & Astrachan, 1996) – both in developing and developed economies. Family firms are characterized by the family involvement in ownership, management and control affecting the way firms behave (Gomez-Mejia, et al., 2011) and compete (Basco, 2014). Family involvement in economic activities makes family firms being among the world’s oldest firms (The Economist, 2015), to focus more on resilience than performance (Kachaner, et al., 2012), to perform better than non-family firms (Mazzi, 2011) in some contexts, and to have a particular inclination for social issues (Van Gils, et al., 2014; Vazquez, 2016). However, on the other hand, there is a high mortality among family firms during the management succession process from one generation to another, there is a lack of professionalization (Bloom & Van Reenen, 2010) that pushes them to compete in sub-markets and, in some countries, family business tend to control country strategic resources (Morck & Yeung, 2004) increasing social and economic inequality (Fogel, 2006). Consequently, family involvement in economic activities has a paradoxical view as a resilient/rigid organization – Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde effect (Basco, 2015) – with positive and negative effect for economic development(Basco & Bartkeviciute, 2016).

The field of family business has gained significant external legitimacy (Chrisman, et al., 2003; Pérez Rodríguez & Basco, 2011) since its inception by analyzing the family effect on the firm (firm-familiness effect), but a macro understanding of the family firm on regional economic and and social development has hardly being investigated (Stough, et al., 2015). To date, the regional familiness model (Basco, 2015) posits that family firms’ embeddedness in social, economic, and productive structures may affect the geographical dynamics (e.g., factors of production, regional processes, and dimensions of proximity) responsible for social and economic development. However, several questions remain open and unexplored.

The aim of this track is to address the call made by Stough, Welter, Block, Wennberg, and Basco (2015) to further investigate the role that family firms plays in regional development, entrepreneurship and clusters (Rocha 2015; 2004). Through studies about how, when, and under what circumstances the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde effect emerges, the special track will help expand our understanding of family business through the researchers’ findings about the applicability of extant theories and empirical evidence from developing and developed economies. In addition, this special track can help us develop newly grounded theories to achieve a better understanding of family business and regional development.

Questions and themes that can be submitted and developed for this special track include, yet are not limited to:

  • How do national and regional contexts in Latin America affect resilience of family firms?
  • How do family firms contribute to regional development, specifically in terms of regional employment and innovation?
  • What causal mechanisms underlie the role of family firms in regional development?
  • Do family firms care more than other firms about the region in which they are located?
  • Which characteristics of family firms (e.g., management, ownership, control) matter?
  • What is the role of the founder, and what is the role of succeeding family generations?
  • What is the role of family-owned businesses in the region in which they are located?
  • Which regional policies help family firms grow? Which regions attract family firms, and which do not?
  • Which regional conditions foster family firm development? Which barriers do family firms experience at the regional level?
  • How can family firms benefit from a strong regional entrepreneurial orientation?
  • How do family firms affect regional competitiveness?
  • How do family firms contribute to the development and formation of industrial clusters and regional milieus?
  • What ethical dilemmas arise for families in business in the context of adverse situations? How do family firms and business families deal with ethical issues?
  • How do some governance-related characteristics such as autocracy, entrenchment, nepotism, and resistance to change affect family business resilience?

LAEMOS is the premier conference on Latin American and European Organization Studies. Its purpose is to strengthen the Latin America-Europe scholarly link by encouraging interdisciplinary studies of organizations in Latin American and European societies. LAEMOS Conference “Organizing for Resilience: Scholarship in Unsettled Times” will take place from 22nd to 24th March 2018 at IAE Business School, Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Authors will be able to submit their abstracts (1.000 words) through the website until September 30, 2017 (SUB-02: Family Business and Regional Development). Notifications of acceptance will be provided by early December 2017. Please do not hesitate to contact Pedro Vázquez ( and the organizing committee ( should you need any clarification or further assistance.

Publication opportunities. Journal of Family Business Management Special Issue on “ENTREPRENEURIAL FAMILIES IN BUSINESS ACROSS GENERATIONS, CONTEXTS AND CULTURES”. Guest Editors: Albert James, Rowe School of Business, Dalhousie University, Canada, Elias Hadjielias, University of Central Lancashire, Cyprus, Maribel Guerrero, Northumbria University, UK, Allan Discua Cruz, Lancaster University Management School, UK, Rodrigo Basco, American University of Sharjah, Sheikh Saoud bin Khalid bin Khalid Al-Qassimi Chair in Family Business, UAE.


Basco, R. (2014). Exploring the influence of the family upon firm performance: Does strategic behaviour matter? International Small Business Journal, 32(8), 967–995.

Basco, R. (2015). Family Business and Regional Development. A theoretical model of regional familiness. Journal of Family Business Strategy, 6(4), 259–271.

Basco, R., & Bartkeviciute, I. (2016). Is there any room form family business into European Union 2020 Strategy? Family business and regional public policy. Local Economy, 31(6), 709–732.

Bjuggren, C. M., Johansson, D., & Sjögren, H. (2011). A Note on Employment and Gross Domestic Product in Swedish Family-Owned Businesses: A Descriptive Analysis. Family Business Review, 24(4), 362–371.

Bloom, N., & Van Reenen, J. (2010). Why Do Management Practices Differ across Firms and Countries? Journal of Economic Perspectives, 24(1), 203–224.

Chrisman, J. J., Chua, J. H., & Steier, L. P. (2003). An introduction to theories of family business. Journal of Business Venturing, 18(4), 441–448.

Faccio, M., & Lang, L. H. P. (2002). The ultimate ownership of Western European corporations. Journal of Financial Economics, 65(3), 365–395.

Fogel, K. (2006). Oligarchic family control, social economic outcomes, and the quality of government. Journal of International Business Studies, 37(5), 603–622.

Gomez-Mejia, L. R., Cruz, C., Berrone, P., & De Castro, J. (2011). The Bind that Ties: Socioemotional Wealth Preservation in Family Firms. The Academy of Management Annals, 5, 653–707.

Kachaner, N., Stalk, G., & Bloch, A. (2012). What you can learn from family business. Harvard Business Review, 90(11), 102-106.

Mazzi, C. (2011). Family business and financial performance: Current state of knowledge and future research challenges. Journal of Family Business Strategy, 2(3), 166–181.

Morck, R. K., & Yeung, B. (2004). Family control and the rent-seeking society. Entrepreneurship-Theory and Practice, 28(4), 391–409.

Perez Rodriguez, M. J., & Basco, R. (2011). The cognitive legitimacy of the family business field. Family Business Review, 24(4).

Rocha, H. (2015). Do clusters matter to firm and regional development and growth? Management Research: Journal of the Iberoamerican Academy of Management, 13(1), 83–123.

Rocha, H. O. (2004). Entrepreneurship and development: The role of clusters. Small Business Economics, 23(5), 363–400.

Shanker, M. C., & Astrachan, J. H. (1996). Myths and Realities: Family Businesses’ Contribution to the US Economy— A Framework for Assessing Family Business Statistics. Family Business Review, 9(2), 107–123.

Stough, R., Welter, F., Block, J., Wennberg, K., & Basco, R. (2015). Family business and regional science: “Bridging the gap.” Journal of Family Business Strategy, 6(4).

The Economist. (2015). Family Companies – To have and to hold. Special Report. April, 18th.

Van Gils, A., Dibrell, C., Neubaum, D. O., & Craig, J. B. (2014). Social Issues in the Family Enterprise. Family Business Review, 27(3), 193–205.

Vazquez, P. (2016). Family Business Ethics: At the Crossroads of Business Ethics and Family Business. Journal of Business Ethics, 1–19.


About Rodrigo Basco

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