Applying Artificial Neural Networks
to Evaluate Export Performance:
A Relational Approach

Vol:10 No.4 / 2009

Instituto Superior de Contabilidade e Administração do Porto and EDGE UP, Portugal
Hortênsia BARANDAS
Faculdade de Economia da Universidade do Porto and EDGE UP, Portugal
Paulo Alexandrei PIRES
Universidade Portucalense, Portugal

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      The paper applies artificial neural networks to investigate the effect of the exporterís relationship orientation on the export performance, mediated by the relationship quality, taking into account the supplierís strategic orientation and the foreign customerís approach to purchasing. The proposed model is supported mainly by the Second Networking Marketing Paradox, the Commitment-Trust Theory, the Relationship Marketing Paradigm and International Marketing fundamentals. The model developed, proposes that an exporterís relationship orientation influences the relationship quality with a foreign customer, which, in turn, influences the exporterís performance. Furthermore, the model proposes that the content of the relationship orientation is contingent on either the companyís strategic orientation Ė internally defined Ė or the interface with the customer, which is external to the companyís decision-making. The results of the empirical study generally confirm the theoretical hypotheses.

      Keywords: export performance, relationship orientation, relationship quality, strategic orientation, interface

Pages: 713 - 734