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Designing Matrix Structures to Fit MNC Strategy


Correspondence to: Joachim Wolf, University of Kiel, Westring 425, 24098 Kiel, Germany. E-mail:


Matrix structures and network designs are the primary organizational alternatives available to MNCs to implement increasingly complex multidimensional strategies. Despite a growing interest in matrix structures among MNC managers, theory about how to design and fit the different types of matrix structure to MNC strategy is largely absent from the scholarly literature. To address this gap, the present study develops an information-processing model of strategy-structure fit for MNC matrix structures. It does this by modifying and extending logic already established for fitting elementary structures to MNC strategy. Hypotheses based on the model are empirically supported, using a sample of 57 German MNCs with matrix structures. Multivariate discriminant analysis further reveals that an important element of strategy—the technological similarity of products in an MNC—is still missing from the literature and proposed model.