Dancing with Strangers? Initial Trust and the Formation of Initial Collaborations Between New Ventures and Corporate Venture Capitals.

Massimo Colombo (Politecnico di Milano)
Kourosh Shafi (Politecnico di Milano)

Abstract: Theories of initial trust formation posit two distinct perspectives, an institutional and a cognitive account. In an effort to overcome this conceptual impasse, we investigate relevant sources of institutional and cognitive trust in an integrative model and empirically assess the relative importance of each view. We use the context of new venture’s initial investment ties with corporate venture capital as these initial inter-organizational relationships are particularly fraught with great risks of misappropriation for new venture’s technological resources, and thus, the trustworthiness of corporate investors is an important consideration for new ventures. We find that institutional trust has no direct effect on initial trust in this context; however, not only cognitive processes producing expectations of trust have direct effect on initial trust, but also they moderate the relationship between institutional trust and initial trust.

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