Inter-Organizational Knowledge Transfer as a Source of Innovation: The Role of Absorptive Capacity and Information Management Systems

  • Stephen S. Cohen
  • Cinzia Dal Zotto
Part of the Annals of Information Systems book series (AOIS, volume 1)


The radical improvements and massive diffusion of information and communication technologies within the last decade have fostered the development and exchange of new knowledge. Firms realize that they now compete in their abilities to access, acquire and appraise new information in order to enhance their innovation capacity by applying it. Davenport and Prusak (1998) note that though spontaneous and unstructured transfers of knowledge routinely take place across organizational and geographical boundaries, independently from the management of the process, companies are now expected to have well defined systems of knowledge management. A substantial literature addressing the competitive dimensions of information management is, therefore, developing. The important and not yet solved questions concern the conditions needed for effective information and knowledge transfer and how to establish them (Zahra and George, 2002). The exploration of these conditions is the principal concern of this essay which studies three very different kinds of firms: new, venture firms (our principal focus); serial acquirers (Cisco), operating at scale in world markets but rooted in a local ecology of venture firms, and Japanese majors, such as Toshiba, NEC and Fujitsu operating, in their rapid growth period, far from such an environment.


Venture Capital Knowledge Transfer Absorptive Capacity Cultural Distance Information Management System 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephen S. Cohen
    • 1
  • Cinzia Dal Zotto
    • 2
  1. 1.Berkeley Roundtable on the International Economy (BRIE)University of California at BerkeleyBerkeley
  2. 2.Jönköping International Business SchoolJönköpingSweden

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