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A formal analysis of knowledge combination in multinational enterprises


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  • Peter J Buckley

    (Centre for International Business University of Leeds, Leeds University Business School, UK)

  • Martin J Carter

    (Leeds University Business School, UK)

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    This paper outlines a model of process organisation for the combination of different types of knowledge from spatially separated sources in the multinational enterprise. The model envisages an initiator-entrepreneur as the motor of the process, and identifies regularities in the types of knowledge combination within the firm that provide additional value. Knowledge losses, decision losses and coordination losses are imperfections in the process, and result in barriers to the effective combination of knowledge. Strategies of combination are of three types – additive, sequential and complex – implying different types of control outcomes. Journal of International Business Studies (2004) 35, 371–384. doi:10.1057/palgrave.jibs.8400095

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Palgrave Macmillan in its journal Journal of International Business Studies.

    Volume (Year): 35 (2004)
    Issue (Month): 5 (September)
    Pages: 371-384

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    Handle: RePEc:pal:jintbs:v:35:y:2004:i:5:p:371-384

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    Cited by:
    1. Hong, Jacky F.L. & Nguyen, Thang V., 2009. "Knowledge embeddedness and the transfer mechanisms in multinational corporations," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 44(4), pages 347-356, October.
    2. Tüselmann, Heinz-Josef & McDonald, Frank & Thorpe, Richard, 2006. "The emerging approach to employee relations in German overseas affiliates: A role model for international operation?," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 66-80, February.
    3. Becker-Ritterspach, Florian A.A., 2006. "The social constitution of knowledge integration in MNEs: A theoretical framework," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 358-377, September.
    4. Casillas, José C. & Moreno, Ana M. & Acedo, Francisco J. & Gallego, María A. & Ramos, Encarnación, 2009. "An integrative model of the role of knowledge in the internationalization process," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 311-322, July.
    5. Randi Lunnan & Youzhen Zhao, 2014. "Regional headquarters in China: Role in MNE knowledge transfer," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, Springer, vol. 31(2), pages 397-422, June.
    6. Tallman, Stephen & Chacar, Aya S., 2011. "Communities, alliances, networks and knowledge in multinational firms: A micro-analytic framework," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 201-210, September.
    7. Kafouros, Mario I. & Forsans, Nicolas, 2012. "The role of open innovation in emerging economies: Do companies profit from the scientific knowledge of others?," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 47(3), pages 362-370.
    8. Buckley, Peter J. & Hashai, Niron, 2005. "Firm configuration and internationalisation: A model," International Business Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 14(6), pages 655-675, December.
    9. Buckley, Peter J., 2009. "Internalisation thinking: From the multinational enterprise to the global factory," International Business Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 224-235, June.
    10. Sidonia vonLedebur, 2006. "A Game Theoretic Analysis of the Conditions of Knowledge Transfer by New Employees in Companies," IWH Discussion Papers, Halle Institute for Economic Research 3, Halle Institute for Economic Research.
    11. Kafouros, Mario I. & Buckley, Peter J. & Clegg, Jeremy, 2012. "The effects of global knowledge reservoirs on the productivity of multinational enterprises: The role of international depth and breadth," Research Policy, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 41(5), pages 848-861.
    12. Adenfelt, Maria & Lagerström, Katarina, 2006. "Knowledge development and sharing in multinational corporations: The case of a centre of excellence and a transnational team," International Business Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 381-400, August.
    13. Narula, Rajneesh & Michel, Julie, 2009. "Reverse knowledge transfer and its implications for European policy," MERIT Working Papers 035, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    14. Pierpaolo Andriani & Bill McKelvey, 2007. "Beyond Gaussian averages: redirecting international business and management research toward extreme events and power laws," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 38(7), pages 1212-1230, December.
    15. Colakoglu, Saba & Yamao, Sachiko & Lepak, David P., 2014. "Knowledge creation capability in MNC subsidiaries: Examining the roles of global and local knowledge inflows and subsidiary knowledge stocks," International Business Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 91-101.
    16. Wang, Chengqi & Kafouros, Mario I., 2009. "What factors determine innovation performance in emerging economies? Evidence from China," International Business Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 606-616, December.
    17. Ali Intezari & David Pauleen, 2014. "Management Wisdom in Perspective: Are You Virtuous Enough to Succeed in Volatile Times?," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, Springer, vol. 120(3), pages 393-404, March.
    18. Hashai, Niron, 2009. "Knowledge transfer considerations and the future of the internalization hypothesis," International Business Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 257-264, June.


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