Influence of Network Maturity on Organisational Learning and Knowledge Transfer in Strategic Alliances

  • Ana Aleksić Mirić
Part of the Contributions to Management Science book series (MANAGEMENT SC.)


The aim of this research is to investigate the importance of network age for learning and knowledge transfer among network members. The research is carried out through multiple exploratory case study analysis. It shows that network age per se does not have adequate power to explain learning processes occurring within a network. Age is an important factor of learning, but only as part of a broader concept associated with the evolution of the network, and therefore not directly connected with learning. We recognize this in defining the concept of network maturity. Network maturity is a function of network age, pre-existing experience in working together, and the development of social networks among the employees of organisations that form the network.


Knowledge Transfer Organisational Learning Individual Learning Strategic Alliance Organisational Knowledge 
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.


  1. Anderson J (1983) The architecture of cognition. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MAGoogle Scholar
  2. Argote L (1999) Organisational learning: creating, retaining and transferring knowledge. Kluwer, Norwell, MAGoogle Scholar
  3. Argote L, Beckman SL, Epple D (1990) The persistence and transfer of learning in industrial settings. Manag Sci 36:140–154CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Argyris C, Schon D (1985) Organisational learning: a theory of action perspective. Jossey-Bass, San FranciscoGoogle Scholar
  5. Argyris C, Schön D (1996) Organisational learning II: theory, method and practice. Addison-Westley Publishing Company, ReadingGoogle Scholar
  6. Ariño A, de la Torre J (1998) Learning from failure: towards an evolutionary model of collaborative ventures Organ Sci 9(3):p 306CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Burton MR, DeSanctis G, Obel B (2006) Organisational design: a step by step approach. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Burton MR, Obel B (2004) Strategic organisational diagnosis and design: the dynamics of fit. Springer, New YorkCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Child J (2003) Learning through strategic alliances. In: Dierkes M, Berthoin Antal A, Child J, Nonaka I (eds) Handbook of organisational learning and knowledge. Oxford University Press, New York, pp 657–680Google Scholar
  10. Cummings J (2001) Knowledge transfer across R&D units: an empirical investigation of the factors affecting successful knowledge transfer across intra and inter organisational units, doctoral dissertation. George Washington University, Washington DCGoogle Scholar
  11. Cohen M (1991) Individual learning and organisational routine: emerging connections. Organ Sci 2(1):135CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Cohen WM, Levinthal DA (1989) Innovation and learning: the two faces of R&D. Econ J 99:569–590CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Cyert RM, March JG (1963) A behavioural theory of the firm. Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJGoogle Scholar
  14. Dierkes M, Bethoin AA, Child J, Nonaka I (2001) Handbook of organisational learning. Oxford University Press, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  15. Dixon N (1994) The organizational learning cycles. How can we learn collectively. McGraw-Hill, LondonGoogle Scholar
  16. Doz YL (1996) The evolution of cooperation in strategic alliances: initial conditions or learning processes? Strateg Manag J 17:55–83CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Dodgson M (1993) Learning, trust and technological cooperation. Hum Relat 46:77–95CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Edmondson AC (1999) Psychological safety and learning behavior in work teams. Adm Sci Q 44:350–383CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Eisenhardt KM (1989) Building theories from case study research. Acad Manag Rev 14(4):532–550Google Scholar
  20. Evans P, Pucik V, Barsoux JL (2002) The global challenge-frameworks for international human resource management. McGraw-Hill Irwin, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  21. Fiol CM, Lyles MA (1985) Organisational learning. Acad Manag Rev 10(4):803–813Google Scholar
  22. Faulkner D (1995) International strategic alliances: cooperating to compete. McGraw Hill, LondonGoogle Scholar
  23. Grant RM, Baden-Fuller C (2004) A knowledge accessing theory of strategic alliances. J Manag Stud 41(1):61–84CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Hagendoorn J (1993) Understanding the rationale of strategic technology partnering: international modes of cooperation and sectoral differences. Strateg Manag J 38:85–112Google Scholar
  25. Hamel G (1991) Competition for competence and interpartner learning within international strategic alliances. Strateg Manag J 12:83–103CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hamel G, Doz YL, Prahalad CK (1989) Collaborate with your competitors – and win. Harv Bus Rev 67(1):133–139Google Scholar
  27. Hargadon AB (1999) Group cognition and creativity in organizations. In: Mannix EA, Neale MA, Wageman R (eds) Research on managing groups and teams, vol 2. JAI Press, Greenwich, CTGoogle Scholar
  28. Hedberg B (1981) How organizations learn and unlearn. In: Starbuck W (ed) Handbook of organisational design, vol 3–27. Oxford University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  29. Hennart JF (1988) A transaction cost theory of Equity Joint Ventures. Strategic Management Journal 9, 361–374CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Huber GP (1991) Organisational learning: the contributing process and the literatures. Organ Sci 2(1):88–115CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Inkpen A (1997) ‘An examination of knowledge management in international joint ventures’ In: Beamish PW, Killing JP (Eds.), Cooperative strategies: North American perspective, The New Lexington Press, San Francisco, CAGoogle Scholar
  32. Inkpen AC (1996) Creating knowledge through collaboration. Calif Manag Rev 39(1):123–140CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Inkpen AC, Beamish PW (1997) Knowledge, bargaining power, and the instability of international joint ventures. Acad Manag Rev 22:177–202Google Scholar
  34. Inkpen A, Currall SC (1998) The nature, antecedents and consequences of joint venture trust. J Int Manag 4:1–20CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Inkpen AC (1998a) Learning and knowledge acquisition through international strategic alliances. Acad Manag Exec 12(4):69–80Google Scholar
  36. Inkpen AC (1998b) Learning, knowledge acquisition and strategic alliances. Eur Manag J 16(2):223–229(7)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Inkpen AC, Dinur A (1998) Knowledge management processes and international joint ventures. Organ Sci 9(4):454–468CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Inkpen AC, Tsang EWK (2005) Social capital, networks, and knowledge transfer. Acad Manag Rev 30(1):146–165CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Inkpen A, Ramaswamy K (2006) Global strategy: creating and sustaining advantage across borders. Oxford University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  40. Iyer KNS (2002) Learning in strategic alliances: an evolutionary perspective. Acad Market Sci Rev 10:1–16Google Scholar
  41. Khanna T, Gulati R, Nohria N (1994) Alliances as learning races. Academy of management proceedingsGoogle Scholar
  42. Kogut B (1988) Joint ventures: theoretical and empirical perspectives. Strateg Manag J 9:319–322CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Kogut B (2000) The network as knowledge: generative rules and the emergence structure. Strateg Manag J 21:405–425CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Kraatz M (1996) Learning by association? Inter-organisational networks and adaptation to environmental changes. Acad Manag J 41(6):622–643Google Scholar
  45. Lane P, Lubatkin M (1998) Relative absorptive capacity and inter-organisational learning. Strateg Manag J 19:461–477CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Larsson R, Bengtsson L, Henriksson K, Sparks J (1998) The inter-organisational learning dilemma: collective knowledge development in strategic alliances. Organ Sci 9:285–305CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Levitt B, March JG (1988) Organizational learning. Annu Rev Sociol 14:319–340CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Levinthal DA, March JG (1993) The myopia of learning. Strateg Manag J 14:95–112CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Li N (2002) mode choice and performance of strategic alliances. Doctoral dissertation. Fuqua School of Business, Duke UniversityGoogle Scholar
  50. Lindholm N (1997) Learning processes in international joint ventures in China. Adv Chinese Ind Stud 5:139–154Google Scholar
  51. Lorange P, Roos J (1991) Why some strategic alliances succeed and others fail. J Bus Strategy January–February:25–30Google Scholar
  52. Luo Y (1997) Partner selection and venturing success: the case of joint ventures with firms in The People’s Republic of China. Organ Sci 8:648–662CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Lyles MA (1988) Learning among joint venture sophisticated firms. Manag Int Rev 28(Special Issue):85–97Google Scholar
  54. Lyles MA, Salk JE (1996) Knowledge acquisition from foreign parents in international joint ventures: an empirical examination in the Hungarian Context. J Int Bus Stud 27:877–904CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Lyles M (2003) Organisational learning in international joint ventures: the case of Hungary. In: Dierkes M, Berthoin Antal A, Child J, Nonaka I (eds) Handbook of organisational learning and knowledge. Oxford University Press, New York, pp 657–680Google Scholar
  56. Maier GW, Prange C, Rosensteil L (2001) Psychological perspectives of organisational learning. In: Dierkes M, Berthoin Antal A, Child J, Nonaka I (eds) Handbook of organisational learning and knowledge, Oxford University Press, New York, pp 14–34Google Scholar
  57. March JG, Olsen JP (1976) Ambiguity and choice in organizations. Universitetforlaget, Bergen, NorwayGoogle Scholar
  58. Marquardt MJ (2002) Building the learning organization: mastering the five elements for corporate learning. Davies-Black, Palo AltoGoogle Scholar
  59. Miller D (1996) A preliminary typology of organisational learning: synthesizing the literature. J Manag 22(3):485–505CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Mowery DC, Oxley JE, Silverman BS (1996) Strategic alliances and interfirm knowledge transfer. Strateg Manag J. 17(winter special issue):77–9Google Scholar
  61. Muthusamy SK, White MA (2006) Learning and knowledge transfer in strategic alliances: a social exchange view. Organ Stud 26(3):415–441CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Nonaka I (1991) The knowledge creating company. Harv Bus Rev Nov–Dec:96–104Google Scholar
  63. Nonaka I (1994) A dynamic theory of organisational knowledge creation. Organ Sci 5(1):14–37CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Nonaka I, Takeutchi H (1995) The knowledge creating company. McGrawHill, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  65. Ohmae K (1989) The global logic of strategic alliances. Harv Bus Rev 89(2) 143–154Google Scholar
  66. Osborn R, Hagedoorn J (1997) The institutionalization and evolutionary dynamics of inter-organisational alliances and networks. Acad Manag J 402:261–278CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Parkhe A (1991) Interfirm diversity, organisational learning, and longevity in global strategic alliances. J Int Bus Stud 22:579–601CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Polanyi M (1966) The tacit dimension. Routledge & Kegan Paul, LondonGoogle Scholar
  69. Pucik V (1991) Technology transfer in strategic alliances: competitive collaboration and organisational learning. In: Agmon T, VonGlinow MA (eds) Technology transfer and international business. Oxford University Press, New York, pp 121–138Google Scholar
  70. Ring PS, Van de Ven AH (1994) Developmental processes of cooperative interorganisational relationship. Acad Manag Rev 19(1):93–118Google Scholar
  71. Reagans R, McEvily B (2003) Network structure and knowledge transfer: the effects of cohesion and range. Adm Sci Q 48:240–267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Senge P (1994) The fifth discipline: the art and practice of the learning organization. Doubleday, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  73. Szulanski G (1996) Exploring internal stickiness: impediments to the transfer of best practice within the firm. Strateg Manag J 17:27–43Google Scholar
  74. Winter SG (1987) Knowledge and competency as strategic asset. In: Teece DJ (ed) The competitive challenge: strategies for industrial innovation and renewal. Ballinger, Cambridge, MA, pp 159–184Google Scholar
  75. Wong S (2002) Investing collective learning in teams: the context in which it occurs and the collective knowledge that emerges from it. Doctoral dissertation, Fuqua School of Business, Duke UniversityGoogle Scholar
  76. Yashino M, Rangan US (1995) Strategic alliances: an entrepreneurial approach to globalization. Harvard Business Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  77. Yin RK (1984) Case study research-design and methods. Sage, Thousand OaksGoogle Scholar
  78. Zhao Z, Anand J, Mitchell W (2005) A dual networks perspective on inter-organisational transfer of R&D capabilities: international joint ventures in the Chinese automotive industry. J Manag Stud 42(1):127–160CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of EconomicsUniversity of BelgradeBelgradeSerbia

Personalised recommendations