Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Dr. Naveen Donthu - Chair

Second Advisor

Dr. Detmar Straub

Third Advisor

Dr. Dan Bello

Fourth Advisor

Dr. James Boles


This research tried to explain the role of calculative commitment, loyalty commitment and power asymmetry on behavioral commitment in a business to business scenario. We specifically looked at the trade promotion scenario since retailers face more trade promotions than they can accept and extant research suggests that retailers always choose trade promotions that offer the greatest immediate benefit. This dissertation addressed the following managerial question, “How does a firm select a program (trade deal) when all its vendors offer the same short term economic incentives”. We proposed that other aspects of retailer’s relationship with its vendors determine / influence the program selection decision. First, incentives imbedded in channel relationships namely economic incentives (e.g., access to new products) and social incentives (e.g., affect toward vendor / salesperson) lead to a selection decision. Second, the power asymmetry the retailer has with the various vendors directly impacts decision making and also moderates the impact of the embedded economic / social incentives. We used commitment theory and an experimental design to test our model. We find that calculative commitment has the greatest impact on decision making followed by power asymmetry. We also find that loyalty commitment has the least impact. We also found that under high power asymmetry, calculative commitment has a bigger impact than loyalty commitment on behavioral commitment than under low power asymmetry when loyalty commitment has a bigger impact.

Included in

Marketing Commons