IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/inm/ormnsc/v46y2000i5p597-611.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Behind the Learning Curve: Linking Learning Activities to Waste Reduction

Author

Listed:
  • Michael A. Lapré

    () (Boston University, School of Management, 595 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts 02215)

  • Amit Shankar Mukherjee

    () (125 Summer Street, Watertown, Massachusetts 02472)

  • Luk N. Van Wassenhove

    (INSEAD, Boulevard de Constance, 77305 Fontainebleau Cedex, France)

Abstract

This exploratory research on a decade of Total Quality Management in one factory opens up the black box of the learning curve. Based on the organizational learning literature, we derive a quality learning curve that links different types of learning in quality improvement projects to the evolution of the factory's waste rate. Only 25% of the quality improvement projects---which acquired both know-why and know-how---accelerated waste reduction. The other 75% of the projects either impeded or did not affect waste reduction. In complex and dynamic production environments, locally acquired knowledge is difficult to disseminate. The combination of know-why and know-how facilitates its dissemination.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael A. Lapré & Amit Shankar Mukherjee & Luk N. Van Wassenhove, 2000. "Behind the Learning Curve: Linking Learning Activities to Waste Reduction," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(5), pages 597-611, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:46:y:2000:i:5:p:597-611
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.46.5.597.12049
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. von Hippel, Eric & Tyre, Marcie J., 1995. "How learning by doing is done: problem identification in novel process equipment," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 1-12, January.
    2. Paul S. Adler & Kim B. Clark, 1991. "Behind the Learning Curve: A Sketch of the Learning Process," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 37(3), pages 267-281, March.
    3. Amit Shankar Mukherjee & Michael A. Lapré & Luk N. Van Wassenhove, 1998. "Knowledge Driven Quality Improvement," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 44(11-Part-2), pages 35-49, November.
    4. John F. Muth, 1986. "Search Theory and the Manufacturing Progress Function," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 32(8), pages 948-962, August.
    5. Jaikumar, Ramachandran & Bohn, Roger E., 1992. "A dynamic approach to operations management: An alternative to static optimization," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 265-282, October.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:46:y:2000:i:5:p:597-611. 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). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/inforea.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.