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Gaining Legitimacy by Being Different : Optimal Distinctiveness in Crowdfunding Platforms

Title data

Täuscher, Karl ; Bouncken, Ricarda B. ; Pesch, Robin:
Gaining Legitimacy by Being Different : Optimal Distinctiveness in Crowdfunding Platforms.
In: Academy of Management Journal. (2020) .
ISSN 1948-0989
DOI: https://doi.org/10.5465/amj.2018.0620

Abstract in another language

How do new ventures gain legitimacy and attract critical resources? An increasing body of cultural entrepreneurship research highlights an “optimal distinctiveness” trade-off: new ventures need to be distinctive from their peers to stand out, yet distinctiveness counteracts the attainment of organizational legitimacy. In this paper, we challenge the underlying assumption that distinctiveness necessarily counteracts the attainment of legitimacy and propose that distinctiveness can become a source of legitimacy. This proposition matters because it fundamentally alters the relationship between distinctiveness and resource acquisition from certain audiences. We build on these theoretical arguments to examine new ventures’ resource acquisition from crowdfunders, one of the most important audiences for new ventures. Analysis of 28,425 crowdfunding campaigns across 39 market categories strongly supports our arguments, showing that higher levels of distinctiveness lead to superior crowdfunding performance. We further demonstrate that the legitimating effect of distinctiveness intensifies under the absence of alternative sources of legitimacy. Our study contributes by uncovering a new mechanism and three contingencies for the “optimal distinctiveness” trade-off.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Institutions of the University: Faculties
Faculties > Faculty of Law, Business and Economics
Faculties > Faculty of Law, Business and Economics > Department of Business Administration
Faculties > Faculty of Law, Business and Economics > Department of Business Administration > Chair Business Administration VI - Strategic Management and Organization
Faculties > Faculty of Law, Business and Economics > Department of Business Administration > Chair Business Administration VI - Strategic Management and Organization > Chair Business Administration VI - Strategic Management and Organization - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Ricarda Bouncken
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 300 Social sciences
300 Social sciences > 330 Economics
Date Deposited: 07 Sep 2020 10:43
Last Modified: 07 Sep 2020 10:43
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/56816