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Enhancing organisational learning in teams: has the middle manager got a role?

Laura A. Costanzo (University of Surrey, Guildford, UK)
Vicky Tzoumpa (University of Surrey, Guildford, UK)

Team Performance Management

ISSN: 1352-7592

Article publication date: 13 June 2008




The purpose of this paper is to provide a deeper understanding of the managerial processes that middle managers can employ to facilitate knowledge integration and transfer within project teams and across organizational boundaries.


The paper has a conceptual framework, which draws on the theory of organizational learning and knowledge management. A resource‐based view of the firm and middle management is developed around the theme of enhancing organizational learning within teams.


The paper finds that there is a gap in the research as to how knowledge integration and transfer occur within teams. The paper also provides a re‐valuation of middle managers, whose role has been undermined in the wake of organizational downsizing. Furthermore, the paper provides an understanding of how Janczak's three specific managerial processes are relevant in that middle managers can employ them to facilitate knowledge integration and transfer.

Practical implications

The paper is relevant to practitioners with regard to the practices and processes that middle managers can adopt to facilitate knowledge transfer. It is relevant in that it helps to identify mechanisms to reuse knowledge from project to project.


The paper fills a gap in the theory with regard to the managerial practices and processes that are available to middle management in order to enhance organizational learning within the team and from the team to the rest of the organization.



Costanzo, L.A. and Tzoumpa, V. (2008), "Enhancing organisational learning in teams: has the middle manager got a role?", Team Performance Management, Vol. 14 No. 3/4, pp. 146-164.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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