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Coopetition as an emerging organisational strategy for supply chain resilience: an exploratory study of the UKCS oil and gas sector.

Oke, Eunice Yewande


Eunice Yewande Oke


Peter Atorough


Coopetition, a form of inter-organisational relationship that combines competitive and collaborative theories, has gained the interests of academics and practitioners of inter-organisational studies. However, despite numerous extensive coopetition reviews, several questions remain unanswered - especially with regards to the formation of the strategy. Although studies have acknowledged that coopetition can occur unintentionally, particularly among organisations in pre-existing collaborative relationships, it remains unclear how or if the nature of formation affects the performance or outcome of the coopetitive relationship. It is therefore necesssary for continued research efforts into the study of coopetition as an emergent strategy. This research addresses issues in coopetition studies with the specific aim of uncovering the relationship between the formation of coopetition alliances and its performance. The study argues that antecedents for successful intentional coopetition may not apply in coopetition that emerges unintentionally. Using the UK Oil and Gas Industry as a case study, this research investigates some of the factors that can improve the performance of emergent coopetition, such as its management, form of governance and the role of dedicated alliance functions. The study compares the antecedents for successful deliberate coopetition with the performance of unintentional coopetition. Drawing upon research from inter-organisational studies and interviews of oil and gas industry experts, this study proposes some hypotheses and a conceptual model relating to the interactions of the governance structure, control mechanisms, and management on the performance of both intentional and unintentional coopetition. Additionally, it investigates the role of supply chain flexibility on coopetition performance. The structural equation model is tested using empirical data obtained through web-based questionnaires from 380 supply chain professionals in the oil and gas industry. The results of this study confirm that the management technique and control mechanisms have a significant effect on the outcome of both intentional and unintentional coopetition. In contrast, the flexibility of the supply chain has little impact on the performance of the alliance. The study contributes to inter-organisational studies by demonstrating that the presence of a dedicated alliance function and contractual agreements are critical antecedents in the formation of a coopetitive alliance, including emergent coopetition. The study also highlights its limitations and recommends areas for further research.


OKE, E.Y. 2020. Coopetition as an emerging organisational strategy for supply chain resilience: an exploratory study of the UKCS oil and gas sector. Robert Gordon University, PhD thesis. Hosted on OpenAIR [online]. Available from:

Thesis Type Thesis
Deposit Date Sep 8, 2021
Publicly Available Date Sep 8, 2021
Keywords Business relations; Coopetition; Competition; Cooperation; Emergent business strategies; Oil and gas industry
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