The Effects of R&D Team Co-location on Communication Patterns among R&D, Marketing, and Manufacturing
Reducing the physical distance among R&D engineers and between R&D and marketing is widely believed to result in more frequent communication, and hence higher product development performance. However, the empirical evidence for the effect of co-location on communication frequency is problematic for two reasons: (1) the evidence often features either little contextual realism or doubtful internal validity, and (2) the analysis does not deal with the statistical problems typical of network data. Our study avoids the first problem by using sequential network data collected from a quasi-experiment at an industrial company that regrouped its R&D teams into a new facility. We avoid the second problem by using Wasserman and Iacobucci's (1988) method for the statistical analysis of sequential network data. Our results show that communication among R&D teams was enhanced after co-locating these teams. Surprisingly, communication frequency between R&D and marketing was not affected by the increased physical distance. This may suggest that business procedures accompanying the relocation prevented a widening gap between R&D and marketing. Alternatively, it may indicate that the effect of co-location depends on the content and medium of the communication flows.
Volume (Year): 44 (1998)
Issue (Month): 11-Part-2 (November)
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 7240 Parkway Drive, Suite 300, Hanover, MD 21076 USA|
Web page: http://www.informs.org/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Jaffe, A.B. & Trajtenberg, M., 1992.
"Geographic Localization of Knowledge Spillovers as Evidenced by Patent Citations,"
14-92, Tel Aviv.
- Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg & Rebecca Henderson, 1993. "Geographic Localization of Knowledge Spillovers as Evidenced by Patent Citations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 577-598.
- Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg & Rebecca Henderson, 1992. "Geographic Localization of Knowledge Spillovers as Evidenced by Patent Citations," NBER Working Papers 3993, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Stanley Wasserman & Dawn Iacobucci, 1988. "Sequential social network data," Psychometrika, Springer;The Psychometric Society, vol. 53(2), pages 261-282, June.
- Rafii, Farshad, 1995. "How important is physical collocation to product development success?," Business Horizons, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 78-84.
- Stanley Wasserman & Philippa Pattison, 1996. "Logit models and logistic regressions for social networks: I. An introduction to Markov graphs andp," Psychometrika, Springer;The Psychometric Society, vol. 61(3), pages 401-425, September.
- Michael L. Tushman & Ralph Katz, 1980. "External Communication and Project Performance: An Investigation into the Role of Gatekeepers," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 26(11), pages 1071-1085, November.
- Richard L. Daft & Robert H. Lengel, 1986. "Organizational Information Requirements, Media Richness and Structural Design," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 32(5), pages 554-571, May.
- Morelli, Mark Damian. & Eppinger, Steven D. & Gulati, Rosaline K. & International Center for Research on the Management of Technology., 1995. "Predicting technical communication in product development organizations," Working papers 3602-95, 1995. WP (Intern, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
- Mary Beth Pinto & Jeffrey K. Pinto & John E. Prescott, 1993. "Antecedents and Consequences of Project Team Cross-Functional Cooperation," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 39(10), pages 1281-1297, October.
- David W. Conrath, 1973. "Communications Environment and its Relationship to Organizational Structure," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 20(4-Part-II), pages 586-603, December.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:44:y:1998:i:11-part-2:p:s1-s18. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mirko Janc)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.