How Do Firms Enact Absorptive Capacity? A Routine Based Approach
Ca Foscari University of Venice - Department of Management
Università Ca' Foscari Venezia
June 11, 2011
Department of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia Working Paper No. 9/2012
In spite of an increasing amount of research on absorptive capacity (AC) and its relationship with the innovative performance of a firm, more recently the theoretical debate has drawn attention to the dynamic nature of this construct. There are still a few studies on the organizational routines that make-up absorptive capacity, particularly on those that are at the basis of “potential” AC, which encompass the recognition and the assimilation of external valuable knowledge. According to this claim our research aims to open the black box of routines that shape “potential” AC contributing to this recent debate in two ways: by studying the emergence of recurring patterns of recognition and assimilation of external knowledge in innovative organizations and by investigating how do firms enact absorptive capacity through the formation of its successful routines. Through an inductive research based on a multiple case study, we provide a grounded categorization of the key organizational practices that shape the routines of recognition and the assimilation of external knowledge absorption and we offer preliminary insights on their enactment process.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 25
Keywords: Absorptive capacity, Recognition, Assimilation, Routine, Enacting
JEL Classification: M10, O31, O32Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: July 11, 2012 ; Last revised: September 14, 2012
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