Title: Strengthening plant position in multinational companies by transitioning towards knowledge sending roles
Authors : Szász, Levente
Rácz, Bela
Scherrer, Maike
Deflorin, Patricia
et. al : No
Conference details: 20th International Working Seminar on Production Economics (IWSPE), Innsbruck, Austria, 19 - 23 Februar 2018
Publisher / Ed. Institution : University of Innsbruck
Issue Date: 2018
License (according to publishing contract) : Licence according to publishing contract
Type of review: Peer review (abstract)
Language : English
Subjects : Knoweldge transfer; International manufacturing networks
Subject (DDC) : 658: General Management
Abstract: Manufacturing plants operating within the international manufacturing network (IMN) of a multinational company frequently participate in the intra-company creation and distribution of knowledge, thereby contributing to the competitive advantage of the whole company and in the same time strengthening their own position within the IMN. International business and operations management literature offers several arguments that plants taking up knowledge sending roles within the IMN can better secure their position within the company. Nevertheless, literature offers little guidance on how to become a knowledge disseminator within the IMN. Thus, this paper aims to fill an important gap in the literature related to the concept of disseminative capacity, aiming (1) to explore how the knowledge sending and receiving roles of manufacturing plants can be assessed in an IMN context, and (2) to identify the capabilities needed to become a knowledge sending unit within IMNs. To reach this objective, thirteen case studies are analyzed at plants from four different countries. Results of the case studies show that (1) manufacturing plants can be positioned along a continuum from dominantly knowledge receiving to dominantly knowledge sending units, with multiple intermediary position coexisting; (2) several plants have a strategic intent to change their positions, moving mainly along this continuum towards a higher intensity of knowledge sending roles; (3) three elements are identified as necessary preconditions to develop disseminative capabilities, namely a knowledge sharing oriented organizational culture, managerial systems and structures that reward the transfer of knowledge, and the intensity of inter-plant human interactions.
Departement: School of Engineering
Organisational Unit: Institute of Sustainable Development (INE)
Publication type: Conference other
URI: https://digitalcollection.zhaw.ch/handle/11475/17541
Appears in Collections:Publikationen School of Engineering

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