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Absorptive Capacity: Antecedents, Models and Outcomes

Author

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  • van den Bosch, F.A.J.
  • van Wijk, R.A.J.L.
  • Volberda, H.W.

Abstract

This chapter focuses on the gap between the speed of proliferation of theoretical and empirical contributions and the speed of accumulation of the acquired scientific knowledge regarding absorptive capacity. To contribute to narrowing this gap, we will in particular review the conceptual developments of the absorptive capacity construct. Based on the seminal contributions of Cohen & Levinthal (1989, 1990) we will provide a brief overview of the various conceptual attributes of this construct, like the definition, antecedents and consequences, and levels of analysis involved. Next, we will assess the refinements, extensions and reconceptualizations of this construct in the literature. Furthermore, from the perspective of viewing models as mediating instruments between theory and empirical phenomena (Morgan and Morrison, 1999), we will analyze efforts to build conceptual models. Finally, we will address the progress made, select key problems and we will formulate future research directions to improve the multilevel and transdisciplinary characteristics of absorptive capacity.

Suggested Citation

  • van den Bosch, F.A.J. & van Wijk, R.A.J.L. & Volberda, H.W., 2003. "Absorptive Capacity: Antecedents, Models and Outcomes," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2003-035-STR, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
  • Handle: RePEc:ems:eureri:334
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    Cited by:

    1. Constantina Kottaridi & Marina Papanastassiou & Christos Pitelis & Dimitrios Thomakos, 2007. "The Multinational Corporation and the global sourcing of knowledge: Remodeling absorptive capacity," Working Papers 008, University of Peloponnese, Department of Economics.
    2. Baaij, M.G. & van den Bosch, F.A.J. & Volberda, H.W., 2005. "How Management Consulting Firms Influence Building and Leveraging of Clients’ Competences: Towards a conceptual framework," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2005-079-STR, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
    3. Tobias Schmidt, 2010. "Absorptive capacity-one size fits all? A firm-level analysis of absorptive capacity for different kinds of knowledge," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 31(1), pages 1-18.
    4. Hamel, Nadia & Schrecker, Ted, 2011. "Unpacking capacity to utilize research: A tale of the Burkina Faso public health association," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 31-38, January.
    5. Carmela Elita Schillaci & Marco Romano & Melita Nicotra, 2012. "Science Parks and Entrepreneurship: Enhancing Territorial Absorptive Capacity in a Hostile Region," DSI Essays Series, DSI - Dipartimento di Studi sull'Impresa, vol. 28.
    6. Schillaci Carmela Elita & Romano Marco & Nicotra Melita, 2013. "Territory’s Absorptive Capacity," Entrepreneurship Research Journal, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 109-126, January.
    7. Lin, Hai-Fen & Su, Jing-Qin & Higgins, Angela, 2016. "How dynamic capabilities affect adoption of management innovations," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 862-876.
    8. van Wijk, R.A.J.L. & van den Bosch, F.A.J. & Volberda, H.W. & Heinhuis, S.M., 2005. "Reciprocity of Knowledge Flows in Internal Network Forms of Organizing," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2005-024-STR, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
    9. N. Elangovan, 2016. "Mediation of Perceived Innovation Characteristics on ERP Adoption in Industrial Cluster," International Journal of Innovation and Technology Management (IJITM), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 13(03), pages 1-19, June.
    10. repec:eee:respol:v:47:y:2018:i:1:p:218-231 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Camisón, César & Forés, Beatriz, 2010. "Knowledge absorptive capacity: New insights for its conceptualization and measurement," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 63(7), pages 707-715, July.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    absorptive capacity; innovation; knowledge;

    JEL classification:

    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • L20 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - General
    • M - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics

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