Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Gaining External Knowledge: boundaries in managers' knowledge relations
Handelshögskolan i Stockholm.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, School of Business.
Handelshögskolan i Stockholm.
2009 (English)In: Journal of Knowledge Management, ISSN 1367-3270, Vol. 13, no 6, 448-463 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to investigate interorganizational knowledge exchange from the perspective of the individual manager/professional. The paper aims to study the kinds of relationships managers/professionals in SMEs are involved in and the way in which they construct boundaries within and around these interorganizational relationships enabling and hindering knowledge acquisition.Design/methodology/approachThe paper is based on 31 interviews with managers and professionals in seven SMEs. Interviews focused on the interorganizational relationships they viewed as important sources of knowledge for themselves and their organizations.FindingsThe study shows that managers/professionals gain vital knowledge from far more interorganizational relationships than those formally designed for knowledge acquisition. The most important sources of knowledge were relationships with suppliers and customers. The study also identifies five boundary dimensions – interests, interpretive frameworks, trust, private/organizational and priority – which respondents use in constructing boundaries within and around the relationships. These boundary dimensions represent important conditions for knowledge acquisition through the relationship.Research limitations/implicationsThe five boundary dimensions are generated based on a sample of SMEs in Sweden. They must thus be regarded as provisional and need to be validated in further research including larger organizations in different cultural contexts. Future studies should also focus on the dynamics of the boundaries and their interrelations as relationships evolve.Originality/valueThis paper adds to research on interorganizational knowledge acquisition by taking an individual level perspective and identifying boundary dimensions through which the relationships and their knowledge flows are shaped.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group , 2009. Vol. 13, no 6, 448-463 p.
Keyword [en]
workplace learing, social networks, knowledge transfer
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-51104DOI: 10.1108/13673270910997114OAI: diva2:384125
Gränslös management
Available from: 2011-01-07 Created: 2011-01-07 Last updated: 2011-05-12Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Publisher's full text

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Löwstedt, Jan
By organisation
School of Business
In the same journal
Journal of Knowledge Management
Business Administration

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Altmetric score

Total: 87 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link