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MNC Knowledge Transfer, Subsidiary Absorptive Capacity and HRM


  • Minbaeva, Dana

    (Department of International Economics and Management, Copenhagen Business School)

  • Pedersen, Torben

    (Department of International Economics and Management, Copenhagen Business School)

  • Bjoerkman, Ingmar

    (Swedish School of Economics and INSEAD)

  • Fey, Carl F.

    (Stockholm School of Economics)

  • Park, H.J.

    (Cornell University)


Based on a sample of 169 subsidiaries of MNCs operating in USA, Russia, and China, this paper investigates the relationship between MNC subsidiary HRM practices, absorptive capacity and knowledge transfer. The paper makes two key contributions. First, the paper examines the relationship between the application of specific HRM practices and the level of the absorptive capacity. Second, the paper suggests that absorptive capacity should be conceptualized as being comprised of two dimensions—ability and motivation. Further, results indicate that the interaction of ability and motivation (absorptive capacity) significantly facilitate transfer of knowledge from other parts of the MNC.

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  • Minbaeva, Dana & Pedersen, Torben & Bjoerkman, Ingmar & Fey, Carl F. & Park, H.J., 2001. "MNC Knowledge Transfer, Subsidiary Absorptive Capacity and HRM," Working Papers 14-2001, Copenhagen Business School, Department of International Economics and Management.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhb:cbsint:2001-014

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Henrik Bresman & Julian Birkinshaw & Robert Nobel, 1999. "Knowledge Transfer in International Acquisitions," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 30(3), pages 439-462, September.
    2. Foss, Nicolai J. & Pedersen, Torben, 2002. "Transferring knowledge in MNCs: The role of sources of subsidiary knowledge and organizational context," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 49-67.
    3. Peter J. Lane & Jane E. Salk & Marjorie A. Lyles, 2001. "Absorptive capacity, learning, and performance in international joint ventures," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(12), pages 1139-1161, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Urmas Varblane & Katrin M??nnik & Helena Hannula, 2005. "Autonomy and Performance of Foreign Subsidiaries in five Transition Countries," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp780, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    2. Urmas Varblane & Katrin Männik & Helena Hannula, 2005. "Autonomy And Performance Of Foreign Subsidiaries In Transition Countries," University of Tartu - Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Working Paper Series 38, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Tartu (Estonia).

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