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Paper info: CONTRACTING FOR KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER

Title


CONTRACTING FOR KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER

Authors


Stefanos Mouzas
Lancaster University
United Kingdom
Stefanos Mouzas

Place of Publication


The paper was published at the 24th IMP-conference in Uppsala, Sweden in 2008.

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Abstract


Every single firm is confronted with the challenge of knowledge transfer which is only possible through the arrangement of repeated exchanges with other idiosyncratically capable firms. The problem with knowledge transfer is that the conditions under which transfer may occur need to be explicitly stated and manifested as joint consent between the involved firms. The present study addresses this problem by investigating inter-firm contracting for knowledge transfer. The study builds on notions of knowledge transfer, based on empirical research conducted between 2003 and 2007 to examine real-world contracts in manufacturer-retailer networks. In this study, knowledge transfer is not understood as what organizations have learned cognitively, but to what extent they have developed the capability to engage in give-and-take activities that generate joint gains. The study draws conclusions on the role of contracts for knowledge transfer and more widely on the dialectic nature of knowledge in business networks.