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The social constitution of knowledge integration in MNEs: A theoretical framework

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  • Becker-Ritterspach, Florian A.A.
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    Abstract

    The goal of this article is to present a theoretical framework for a better understanding of knowledge integration in multinational enterprises (MNEs). It is argued that the enormous body of mainstream contributions from the field of International Business has largely failed to consider the transformational nature, the micro-foundations, and above all the social constitution of knowledge integration. Mainly drawing on and combing two sociological theories - Scandinavian Institutionalism and Structuration Theory - this paper contributes to an alternative understanding on knowledge integration in MNEs. In this view, knowledge integration is seen as dialectic transformation, constituted by human actors and embedded in social systems. It is argued that if we wish to understand knowledge integration, we need to ask on the micro-level, how specific actors are differently affected and able to shape such processes based on their social-systemic positioning.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of International Management.

    Volume (Year): 12 (2006)
    Issue (Month): 3 (September)
    Pages: 358-377

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:intman:v:12:y:2006:i:3:p:358-377

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    Related research

    Keywords: Multinational enterprise Knowledge processes Knowledge integration Knowledge translation Micro-perspective Structuration Theory Scandinavian Institutionalism;

    References

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    1. Blomstermo, Anders & Eriksson, Kent & Lindstrand, Angelika & Sharma, D. Deo, 2004. "The perceived usefulness of network experiential knowledge in the internationalizing firm," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 355-373.
    2. Foss, Nicolai J. & Pedersen, Torben, 2002. "Transferring knowledge in MNCs: The role of sources of subsidiary knowledge and organizational context," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 49-67.
    3. Bernard L Simonin, 2004. "An empirical investigation of the process of knowledge transfer in international strategic alliances," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 35(5), pages 407-427, September.
    4. Peter J Buckley & Martin J Carter, 2004. "A formal analysis of knowledge combination in multinational enterprises," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 35(5), pages 371-384, September.
    5. Forsgren, Mats & Pedersen, Torben & Foss, Nicolai J., 1999. "Accounting for the strengths of MNC subsidiaries: the case of foreign-owned firms in Denmark," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 181-196, April.
    6. Nicolai Juul Foss & Torben Pedersen, 2004. "Organizing knowledge processes in the multinational corporation: an introduction," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 35(5), pages 340-349, September.
    7. Yamin, Mo. & Otto, Juliet, 2004. "Patterns of knowledge flows and MNE innovative performance," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 239-258.
    8. Bruce Kogut & Udo Zander, 1993. "Knowledge of the Firm and the Evolutionary Theory of the Multinational Corporation," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 24(4), pages 625-645, December.
    9. Sumantra Ghoshal & Christopher A Bartlett, 1988. "Creation, Adoption and Diffusion of Innovations by Subsidiaries of Multinational Corporations," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 19(3), pages 365-388, September.
    10. Charles Dhanaraj & Marjorie A Lyles & H Kevin Steensma & Laszlo Tihanyi, 2004. "Managing tacit and explicit knowledge transfer in IJVs: the role of relational embeddedness and the impact on performance," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 35(5), pages 428-442, September.
    11. Gordon Redding, 2005. "The thick description and comparison of societal systems of capitalism," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 36(2), pages 123-155, March.
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