Session Details: Session 1000

Knowledge Flows in MNCs

Track G

Date: Monday, October 13, 2008


Time: 17:00 – 18:15


Room: Salon 23

Session Chair:
Taco Reus, Erasmus University-Rotterdam

Title: Does Internationalisation Influence Organisational Advantage? Internationalisation, Learning, and Growth in Technology-Based New Firms


  • Erkko Autio, Imperial College London
  • Johan Bruneel, KU Leuven
  • Bart Clarysse, ETH Zurich

Abstract: We contribute a rare longitudinal examination of the effect of internationalisation on the evolution of organisational capabilities. We used a 10-year longitudinal data set of 274 innovative growth ventures from Belgium to examine how internationalisation impacts entrepreneurial firm’s dynamic capabilities, as reflected in its ability to grow. We found that internationalisation exercises an important formative influence on the entrepreneurial firm, the size of which depends on the firm’s age at internationalisation. A complex relationship between management team’s shared domestic experience and internationalisation outcomes is observed.

Title: Isolation and Separation in Teams: An Analysis of Configurations and their Impact on Knowledge Flows


  • Katharina Raab, Accenture Management Consulting
  • Björn Ambos, University of St. Gallen

Abstract: This study looks at knowledge flows among members of globally dispersed teams. Focusing on a team’s collateral dispersion, both with regards to geographical and cultural separation as well as geographical and cultural isolation, our study provides new empirical evidence on this under-researched topic. Our results suggest that not the plain separation, but rather cultural isolation, cause suboptimal knowledge flows within globally dispersed teams. While this result is well in line with recent research on social categorizations and faultline dynamics in teams, it does challenge some traditional assumptions on the impacts of dispersion and the appropriate level of analysis in studies on knowledge flows within the MNC. We discuss the implications of these results for further research and the management of globally dispersed teams.

Title: Knowledge Embeddedness and The Transfer Mechanisms in Multinational Corporations


  • Jacky Hong, University of Macau
  • Thang Nguyen, National Economics University (Vietnam)

Abstract: This paper reports a qualitative study, conducted at four Japanese-invested companies in China and Vietnam, about their process of international knowledge transfer in multinational corporations (MNCs). Building on the previous literatures that the MNC knowledge is diverse, sticky and socially embedded, we explore how the local actors and foreign managers overcame the knowledge-related barriers and developed the managerial and technical competence in the local subsidiaries. The findings indicated (1) the interplay between knowledge embeddedness and knowledge types (2) the contributions and impact of local knowledge agents and institutions in shaping and determining the appropriate choice of knowledge transfer mechanisms.

Title: Mimetic Diffusion, Knowledge Spillovers, and Expatriate Assignment Practice


  • Jiatao Li, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
  • Cuili Qian, City University of Hong Kong

Abstract: This study examined factors affecting the adoption of expatriate assignment practice with a longitudinal data set of foreign-invested ventures in China between 1979 and 1995. The expatriate assignment adoption is proposed to be influenced by a combination of mimetic diffusion and knowledge spillover in the expatriate community. Moreover, this relationship is moderated by the cultural distance between the MNC home and host countries. The findings showed an inverted U-shaped relationship between the adoption of an MNC’s expatriate assignment practice and the use of expatriates by other FDIs in the similar communities, consistent with our predictions. We also found cultural distance moderating this relationship. Implications for research and practice are discussed.

All Sessions in Track G...

Sun: 10:00 – 11:30
Session 1503: Explaining Knowledge Flows within the MNC: Organizational vs. Individual-Level Perspectives
Sun: 13:00 – 14:30
Session 1603: Internationalization among Financial Service Firms
Sun: 15:00 – 16:30
Session 1703: Exploring the Limits of Corporate Social Responsibility
Mon: 11:15 – 12:30
Session 1010: Internationalization Strategy
Mon: 15:30 – 16:45
Session 1002: Competing in a Global Economy
Mon: 17:00 – 18:15
Session 1000: Knowledge Flows in MNCs
Session 1005: Emerging Markets
Tue: 11:15 – 12:30
Session 1003: International Knowledge Diffusion
Session 1110: Social Issues in International Business
Tue: 14:30 – 15:45
Session 1001: MNC Structure
Session 1009: Under Assault: How Companies Can Fight Organized Crime
Wed: 10:00 – 11:15
Session 1004: Foreign Entry Modes
Wed: 11:30 – 12:45
Session 1008: The Impact of Climate Change: Lessons from the Field
Session 1084: Internationalization of Research and Development (R&D)

Strategic Management Society

Cologne Conference