International Journal of Technology Management, 44 (1/2), 2008 – interesting articles

[Deutscher Titel: International Journal of Technology Management, 44 (1/2), 2008 – interessante Artikel]

Market performance and technological knowledge transfer of foreign subsidiaries’ network embeddedness in Taiwan’s electrical and electronic industry 115 – 139
Cheng-Wen Lee

  • Abstract: This paper explores the importance of foreign subsidiaries’ network embeddedness as a strategic resource for market performance and technological competence in multinational enterprises. The conceptual framework of this study is made up of six components: network formative motivation, external network structure, business embeddedness, technical embeddedness, market performance and technological knowledge transfer. Two different types of network embeddedness – business embeddedness and technological embeddedness – are proposed to have an influence on the subsidiaries’ market performance as well as on technological knowledge transfer of new products and production processes in the MNE. Using data on 106 Taiwan’s electrical and electronic manufacturers gathered from a benchmarking questionnaire, eight hypotheses are tested in a LISREL model analysis. The results reveal that the seven hypotheses are supported, albeit under circumstances in which the relationship between network formative motivation and technical embeddedness is not significant. The study’s findings highlight that the foreign subsidiaries’ external network embeddedness is a determinate factor in enhancing the whole MNE’s competitive capacity.
  • Keywords: business networks; market performance; network embeddedness; technological knowledge; knowledge transfer; foreign subsidiaries; Taiwan; electrical and electronics industry; multinational enterprises; MNEs; technology management.
  • DOI (Link): 10.1504/IJTM.2008.020701

Combining organisational and physical location to manage knowledge dissemination 234 – 250
Thomas J. Allen, Breffni Tomlin, Oscar Hauptman

  • Abstract: As the physical distance between engineers’ workstations increases, the probability that they will communicate regularly decreases rapidly. As with many things in nature, this probability declines as the inverse square of distance. At the same time, it must be remembered that while separation decreases the probability of communication, even very close physical proximity does not guarantee communication. Although engineers are more likely to communicate if closer together, the probability remains low in the absence of other relations. Unless people have a reason to communicate frequently about technical issues they will not do so, even over very short distances. When that reason exists, as for example when engineers or scientists share the department or project team membership, their chances of communicating regularly can increase substantially. At this point, we bring together the use of organisational structure and architecture and test the sensitivity of communication to varying positions in physical and organisational space. Results are presented from two very different organisations showing how communication probability varies with different degrees of physical and organisational separation. Finally, we reflect back on the 27-year-old work of Jack Morton, then Executive Vice President of Bell Telephone Laboratories, and show how he anticipated all of our research results long before the research was undertaken.
  • Keywords: technical communication; scientific communication; technology transfer; technology management; organisational structure; physical location; knowledge dissemination; Bell Telephone Laboratories.
  • DOI (Link): 10.1504/IJTM.2008.020706

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