Innovation, Organizational Learning Orientation and Reverse Knowledge Transfer in Multinational Comp

Innovation, Organizational Learning Orientation and Reverse Knowledge Transfer in Multinational Comp

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ISSN 1479-4411 47 ©ACPIL Reference this paper as: Jimenéz-Jimenéz D, Martínez-Costa M and Sanz-Valle R, . “Innovation, Organizational Learning Orientation and Reverse Knowledge Transfer in Multinational Companies” The Electronic Journal of Knowledge Management Volume 12 Issue 1 (pp 47-55) available online at Innovation, Organizational Learning Orientation and Reverse Knowledge Transfer in Multinational Companies Daniel Jimenéz-Jimenéz, Micaela Martínez-Costa and Raquel Sanz-Valle University of Murcia, Murcia, Spain [email protected] [email protected] [email protected] Abstract: Today, innovation is considered one of the main source of competitive advantage for the companies. For multinationals companies (MCNs) innovation is particularly important because they have more challenges to face than domestic organizations. MNCs have also a potential advantage for developing innovations, as they have access to new ideas and knowledge generating in the different locations they operate in. But this potential advantage can only become real if MNCs are able to transfer the knowledge they acquire in one of their locations to the others. This paper analyses the relationship between knowledge transfer and innovation in MNCs. In particular, this research focuses on knowledge transfer from the subsidiaries to the headquarters (reverse knowledge transfer). In addition, this paper studies the effect of the firm´s learning orientation as a mediator in the relation between reverse knowledge transfer and innovation. These relationships are tested using a sample of 104 Spanish MNCs. Our findings show that reverse knowledge influences indirectly on the headquarters’ innovation through its effect on the firm’s learning orientation. These finding s have implications for both academics and practitioners. Keywords: Innovation, Knowledge Management, Reverse knowledge transfer, Learning orientation, Multinationals Companies (MNCs) 1. Introduction Innovation is increasingly considered to be one of the key drivers of the long-term success of a firm and knowledge is frequently cited as antecedent of innovation (Kogut and Zander, 1992, Crossan and Apaydin, 2010, Nonaka and Takeuchi, 1995). The basic assumption here is that companies which are able to renew their knowledge stand a better chance of understanding the consequences of the changes in their environments and are better suited than competitors to respond faster and better to them (Tippins and Sohi, 2003, Sinkula, 1994). Multinational companies (MNCs) are considered to have better opportunities to acquire and exploit knowledge than domestic organizations since they are open to new experiences, markets, cultures and ideas (Bonache and Zárraga-Oberty, 2008) which can foster their innovation capability. In this line, Almeida and Phene (2004) suggest that MNCs innovate by acquiring diverse knowledge from their geographically dispersed subsidiaries and by integrating it into their own core capabilities.
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  • Fall '09
  • Unknown
  • Management, Organizational Learning

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