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Linking absorptive capacity, knowledge transfer and transactive memory

Gert Human (Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch, South Africa)

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing

ISSN: 0885-8624

Article publication date: 14 October 2020

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to construct an argument in support of the idea that absorptive capacity may lead to improved transactive memory conditional to the effectiveness of knowledge transfer between team members.

Design/methodology/approach

The study reports on the results of data collected from 10 knowledge worker teams in a business-to-business context across various industries. The study tests a theoretical model to consider the relationship between the dimensions of absorptive capacity, knowledge transfer effectiveness and transactive memory systems.

Findings

At the individual level, the results suggest that knowledge acquisition and assimilation is associated with higher levels of knowledge transfer while unstructured knowledge transfer is associated with specialisation, credibility and coordination that drives transactive memory.

Originality/value

The results suggest that an alternative conceptualisation of the relationship between absorptive capacity, knowledge transfer effectiveness and transactive memory systems is indeed conceivable. This implies that transactive memory can benefit from increased absorptive capacity and enhanced knowledge transfer effectiveness and may point at an under-explored avenue of research.

Keywords

Citation

Human, G. (2020), "Linking absorptive capacity, knowledge transfer and transactive memory", Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JBIM-01-2020-0060

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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