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Knowledge integration in family SMEs: an extension of the 4I model

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  • Andrea Lionzo

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  • Francesca Rossignoli

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Abstract

This article explores the process of learning and strategic change in small and medium-sized family firms (family SMEs). Organizational learning theory posits that knowledge must be integrated throughout the firm to facilitate strategic renewal. This process occurs in a particular way in family SMEs, according to their specific characteristics. In such firms the family’s role, the company size and the lack of formal procedures and systems strongly affect the process of learning and change. The study applies the 4I model of organizational learning to three case studies and offers empirical support for this model. The article has theoretical implications for variants of the 4I model as applied to family SMEs, and implications for practice related to the family’s role in starting and perpetuating the process of learning and change. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Andrea Lionzo & Francesca Rossignoli, 2013. "Knowledge integration in family SMEs: an extension of the 4I model," Journal of Management & Governance, Springer;Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA), vol. 17(3), pages 583-608, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jmgtgv:v:17:y:2013:i:3:p:583-608
    DOI: 10.1007/s10997-011-9197-y
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kimberly A. Eddleston & Franz Willi Kellermanns & Ravi Sarathy, 2008. "Resource Configuration in Family Firms: Linking Resources, Strategic Planning and Technological Opportunities to Performance," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(1), pages 26-50, January.
    2. Jean-Luc Arregle & Michael A. Hitt & David G. Sirmon & Philippe Very, 2007. "The Development of Organizational Social Capital: Attributes of Family Firms," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(1), pages 73-95, January.
    3. Zahra, Shaker A. & Neubaum, Donald O. & Larraneta, Barbara, 2007. "Knowledge sharing and technological capabilities: The moderating role of family involvement," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 60(10), pages 1070-1079, October.
    4. Chrisman, James J. & Chua, Jess H. & Kellermanns, Franz W. & Chang, Erick P.C., 2007. "Are family managers agents or stewards? An exploratory study in privately held family firms," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 60(10), pages 1030-1038, October.
    5. Martha S. Feldman, 2002. "Organizational Routines as Sources of Connections and Understandings," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 39(3), pages 309-331, May.
    6. Ash Amin & Patrick Cohendet, 2000. "Organisational Learning and Governance Through Embedded Practices," Journal of Management & Governance, Springer;Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA), vol. 4(1), pages 93-116, March.
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