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Making Competencies Cross Business Unit Boundaries: The Interplay between Inter-Unit Coordination, Trust and Knowledge Transferability

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  • A. WILLEM
  • M. BUELENS

    ()

Abstract

The strategic value of knowledge sharing has long been recognized but valuable competencies are too often locked in one business unit. This paper provides insight into the role of organizational factors in spreading complex bundles of knowledge among business units. A study in a British multinational confirms the importance of knowledge transferability, headquarters' role, the close relationship between standardization and knowledge sharing, and the ambiguous role of informal networking.

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File URL: http://www.feb.ugent.be/nl/Ondz/wp/Papers/wp_03_176.pdf
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Paper provided by Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration in its series Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium with number 03/176.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rug:rugwps:03/176

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  1. Bruce Heiman & Jack Nickerson, 2002. "Towards Reconciling Transaction Cost Economics and the Knowledge-based View of the Firm: The Context of Interfirm Collaborations," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(1), pages 97-116.
  2. Argyres, Nicholas S., 1995. "Technology strategy, governance structure and interdivisional coordination," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 337-358, December.
  3. Szulanski, Gabriel, 2000. "The Process of Knowledge Transfer: A Diachronic Analysis of Stickiness," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 82(1), pages 9-27, May.
  4. Jon I Martinez & J Carlos Jarillo, 1989. "The Evolution of Research on Coordination Mechanisms in Multinational Corporations," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 20(3), pages 489-514, September.
  5. Cohendet, Patrick, et al, 1999. "Knowledge Coordination, Competence Creation and Integrated Networks in Globalised Firms," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(2), pages 225-41, March.
  6. Sumantra Ghoshal & Harry Korine & Gabriel Szulanski, 1994. "Interunit Communication in Multinational Corporations," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 40(1), pages 96-110, January.
  7. 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.
  8. Anna Grandori, 1997. "Governance Structures, Coordination Mechanisms and Cognitive Models," Journal of Management and Governance, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 29-47, March.
  9. Argote, Linda & Ingram, Paul, 2000. "Knowledge Transfer: A Basis for Competitive Advantage in Firms," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 82(1), pages 150-169, May.
  10. Bernard L Simonin, 1999. "Transfer of Marketing Know-How in International Strategic Alliances: An Empirical Investigation of the Role and Antecedents of Knowledge Ambiguity," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 30(3), pages 463-490, September.
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Cited by:
  1. D. Van Den Poel, 2003. "Predicting Mail-Order Repeat Buying: Which Variables Matter?," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 03/191, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.

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