Knowledge Transfer and Innovation in Brazilian Multinational Companies

Alisson Eduardo Maehler, Carla Maria Marques Curado, Eugênio Ávila Pedrozo, José Pedro Pires

Abstract


The article analyzes how innovation generation occurs in subsidiaries of Brazilian multinational corporations acting in Portugal, specifically the role of customers in the process and the knowledge dynamics. A multiple case study approach was conducted in four subsidiaries operating in the Portuguese market for at least one year. Firms came from different activity sectors and sizes. Results identify permanent knowledge exchange flows between subsidiaries and headquarters, while the largest pour is from the later ones (in Brazil) to their wings in Portugal. There are frequent innovations taking place in Portuguese subsidiaries. Such innovation processes are typically incremental in nature and occur predominantly in only some areas of the organization, where greater specialization and expertise are located. The most relevant results regard the existing strong interaction between subsidiaries and markets, especially with the larger customers that contribute with suggestions and are able to influence the new products creation in the subsidiaries.

Keywords


Knowledge; innovation; customer intelligence; multinational companies; subsidiaries

Full Text:

PDF [en]

References


BARAÑANO, A. (2008). Métodos e técnicas de investigação em gestão: manual de apoio à realização de trabalhos de investigação. Lisboa, Edições Sílabo.

BARDIN, L. (2009). Análise de conteúdo. Lisboa, Edições 70. BESSANT, J., & TIDD, J. (2007). Innovation and Entrepreneurship. West Sussex, Chichester Wiley.

BIRKINSHAW, J. M., & MORRISON, A. J. (1995). Configurations of strategy and structure in subsidiaries of multinational corporations. Journal of International Business Studies, 26(4), 729-754.

CAMUFFO, A., FURLAN, A., ROMYEAR, P., & VINELLI, A. (2007). Routes towards supplier and production network internationalization. Journal of Operations and Production Management, 27(4), 371 – 387.

CHRISTENSEN, C. (2006). The Innovator’s Dilemma. New York, Collins Business Essentials.

CHINI, T. (2004). Effective knowledge transfer in multinational corporation. New York, Polgrave-Macmillan.

COHEN, W. & LEVINTHAL, D. (1990). Absorptive capacity: a new perspective on learning and innovation. Administrative Science Quarterly, 30, 128-152.

COMPANY A. (2010). Fornecimentos: cada cliente uma história. Grupo A em revista, n. 57, march/april.

COMPANY B. (2008). Annual report 2008. Lisbon, Company B.

COMPANY D. (2010). Conheça a empresa: tecnologia e segurança. São Paulo, Company D.

COSTA, C. G. (2006). Proximidade cultural e dinamismo econômico: por que investem as empresas portuguesas no Brasil. Revista de Administração de Empresas, 46, Edição Especial Minas Gerais.

CURADO, C. (2006). Organizational learning and Organizational design. The Learning Organization, 13 (1), 25-48.

DAFT, R. & WEICK, K. E. (1984). Toward a model of organization as interpretation system. Academy of Management Review, 9(2), 284-295.

DESS, G., GUPTA, A., HENNART, J. & HILL, C. (1995). Conducting and integrating strategy research at the international, corporate, and business levels: issues and directions. Journal of Management, 21 (3), 357-393.

EASTERBY-SMITH, M. & PRIETO, I. (2008). Dynamic capabilities and knowledge management: a integrative role for learning? British Journal of Management, 19(3),

–249.

FLEURY, A., & FLEURY, M. T. L. (2007). Internacionalização de empresas brasileiras: em busca de uma abordagem teórica para os late movers. In: In Fleury, M. T. L. e Fleury, A. (Eds.) Internacionalização e os países emergentes. São Paulo, Atlas.

FORS, G. (1998). Location R&D abroad: the role of adaptation and knowledge-seeking. In: BRAUNERHJELM, P. e EKHOLM, K. The geography of multinational firms. New York, Kluwer.

GRAY, C. (2006). Absorptive capacity, knowledge management and innovation in entrepreneurial small firms. International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour

& Research, 12(06), 345-360.

GUILLEN, M., & GARCIA-CANAL, E. (2009). The American model of the multinational firm and the “new” multinationals from emerging economies. Academy of Management Perspectives, 23(02), 23-35.

HONG, J. F. L., & NGUYEN, T. V. (2009). Knowledge embeddedness and the transfer mechanisms in multinational corporations. Journal of World Business,

, 347-356.

HSU, C., & WANG, Y. S. (2008). A model o intraorganizational knowledge sharing: development and initial. Journal of Global Information Management, 16(3)

-73.

JANTUNEN, A. (2005). Knowledge-processing capabilities and innovative performance: an empirical study. European Journal of Innovation Management, 8(3), 336-349.

LI, C. Y., & HSIEH, C. Y. (2009). The impact of knowledge stickiness on knowledge transfer implementation, internalization, and satisfaction for multinational corporations. International Journal of Information Management, 29(6), 425-435.

MCCANN, B., & FOLTA, T. (2008). Location matters: where we have been and where we might go in agglomeration research. Journal of Management, 34(3),

-565.

NONAKA, I. (1991). The knowledge-creating company. Boston, Harvard Business Review.

PETERAF, M. (1993). The cornerstones of competitive advantage: a resource-based view. Strategic Management Journal, 14(3), 179-191.

PORTER, M. Competitive strategy: techniques for analyzing industries and competitors by Michael Porter. In: Wheelen, T., & Hunger, J. (2008). Strategic Management and Business Policy, 11th edition. New Jersey: Pearson / Prentice Hall.

KELLEY, T., & LITTMANN, J. (2001). The art of innovation: lessons in creativity from IDEO, America’s leading design firm. New York, Randon House.

OLIVEIRA JUNIOR, M. de M. (2007). Transferência de conhecimento e o papel das subsidiárias em corporações multinacionais brasileiras. In: Fleury, M. T. L.; Fleury, A. (Org.). Internacionalização e os países emergentes. São Paulo, Atlas, 216-237.

RIBEIRO, F. & OLIVEIRA JR., M. (2009). Transferência e transferência reversa de conhecimento: o caso da aquisição da Perez Companc pela Petrobras na Argentina. Revista Brasileira de Gestão de Negócios, 11(30), 79-93.

RIEGE, A. (2007). Actions to overcome knowledge transfer barriers in MNC`s. Journal of Knowledge Management, 11(1), 48-67.

SHERER, F. L., GOMES, C. M., & KRUGLIANSKAS, I. (2009). The internationalization process of Brazilian companies: a study of multiple cases in the heavy construction industry. Brazilian Administrative Review, 06(4), 280-298.

SUBSIDIARY B. (2008). Report “The company First Half 2008”. Lisbon, SB.

SUBSIDIARY B. (2008a). Report “Relatório de Gestão 2008”. Brasília, MB.

SUBSIDIARY D. Institucional brochure “Perfil da empresa”. Lisboa, SD, 2010.

THOMKE, S. & HIPPEL, E. (2002). Customers as innovators: a new way to create value. Harvard Business Review, s/n, April, 74-81.

URBAN, G. & VON HIPPEL, E. (1988). Lead user analyses for the development of new industrial products. Management Science, 34(5), 569–82.

VERNON, R. & WELLS, L. T. JR. (1991). The manager in the international economy, 6 e.d. New York: Prentice Hall.

VERNON, R. (1966). International investment and international trade in the product cycle. Quarterly Journal of Economics, 80(2), 190-207.

WANG, C. L., & AHMED, P. K. (2007). Dynamic capabilities: a review and research agenda. International Journal of Management Reviews, 9(1), 31–51

WHEELEN, T., & HUNGER, J. (2008). Strategic Management and Business Policy, 11th edition. New Jersey: Pearson / Prentice Hall.

YANG, Q., MUDAMBI, R., & MEYER, K. (2008). Conventional and reverse knowledge flows in multinational corporations. Journal of Management, 34(5), 882-992.




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0718-27242011000400001



Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.


2009 © Universidad Alberto Hurtado - Facultad de Economía y Negocios
Erasmo Escala 1835 - Santiago, Chile - Teléfono (56-2) 8897356
Economic Analysis Review | Observatorio Económico | Documentos de Investigación |E-mail Admin|

Journal Supported by Chimera Innova Group