The Functions of Middle And Top Management in the Dynamic Capabilities Framework

Kindai Management Review Vol. 1, 2013 (ISSN: 2186-6961)

25 Pages Posted: 14 Mar 2014 Last revised: 25 Jan 2016

Date Written: October 15, 2012


This paper examines the roles played by middle- and top-level managers in the dynamic capabilities framework. The key entrepreneurial capabilities needed for asset orchestration and realignment of the enterprise often reside in the skills and knowledge of top managers. Although dynamic capabilities favor shallow hierarchies, middle managers will always fulfill vital functions that complement those of top management within the framework. They play a variety of roles, including oversight of the "ordinary capabilities" that underpin the firm’s technical fitness, leadership of product development teams, and direct (or indirect) involvement with the development of routine-based dynamic capabilities. Empirical research on the interaction between levels of management will most likely need to be based on in-depth case studies because of the context-dependent nature of the relationship between management and performance.

JEL Classification: M10

Suggested Citation

Heaton, Sohvi and Teece, David J., The Functions of Middle And Top Management in the Dynamic Capabilities Framework (October 15, 2012). Kindai Management Review Vol. 1, 2013 (ISSN: 2186-6961). Available at SSRN:

David J. Teece

Institute for Business Innovation ( email )

F402 Haas School of Business, #1930
Berkeley, CA 94720-1930
United States
(510) 642-4041 (Phone)

No contact information is available for Sohvi Heaton

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