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Subsidiary managers’ knowledge mobilizations: Unpacking emergent knowledge flows

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  • Tippmann, Esther
  • Sharkey Scott, Pamela
  • Mangematin, Vincent

Abstract

Knowledge flows are a key source of advantage for multinational corporations (MNCs); however the nuances of knowledge flow practices and their micro-foundations require further theoretical development. Using qualitative data on 40 cases of subsidiary managers’ knowledge mobilizations, this paper unravels micro-level practices of knowledge flows in MNCs. We find that subsidiary managers’ knowledge mobilizations initiate a complex pattern of subsidiary knowledge inflows, pinpointing the significance of lateral and bottom up exchanges (locally as well as internationally). We use these insights to distinguish between two types of subsidiary knowledge flows: deliberate and emergent, and discuss how their differences have profound implications for the investigation of MNC knowledge flows and their micro-foundations.

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  • Tippmann, Esther & Sharkey Scott, Pamela & Mangematin, Vincent, 2014. "Subsidiary managers’ knowledge mobilizations: Unpacking emergent knowledge flows," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 431-443.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:worbus:v:49:y:2014:i:3:p:431-443
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jwb.2013.09.001
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    1. repec:bla:jomstd:v:54:y:2017:i:4:p:455-482 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Andersson, Ulf & Dasí, Àngels & Mudambi, Ram & Pedersen, Torben, 2016. "Technology, innovation and knowledge: The importance of ideas and international connectivity," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 153-162.
    3. repec:eee:worbus:v:53:y:2018:i:4:p:529-539 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Dasí, Àngels & Pedersen, Torben & Gooderham, Paul N. & Elter, Frank & Hildrum, Jarle, 2017. "The effect of organizational separation on individuals’ knowledge sharing in MNCs," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 431-446.
    5. Kostova, Tatiana & Marano, Valentina & Tallman, Stephen, 2016. "Headquarters–subsidiary relationships in MNCs: Fifty years of evolving research," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 176-184.

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