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Antecedents of knowledge-seeking intentions and efforts within new product development teams: empirical evidence from knowledge-based Chinese companies

Wei Zhang (School of Public Administration, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China)
Yuan Jiang (China Europe International Business School, Shanghai, China)
Wenkai Zhou (College of Business, University of Central Oklahoma, Edmond, Oklahoma, USA)
Wei Pan (School of Economics and Management, Harbin Engineering University, Harbin, China)

Journal of Knowledge Management

ISSN: 1367-3270

Article publication date: 8 March 2022




This study aims to examine the antecedents of knowledge-seeking intentions (SIs) and efforts within new product development (NPD) teams.


Data was collected from 331 employees affiliated with 29 NPD teams across 18 Chinese firms in five high-tech and knowledge-based industries via an online assessment and a survey. Hierarchical linear modelling was used to test the hypotheses using HLM and Mplus software.


The results of this study show that intrinsic task motivation (IM) and personal task experience (TE) positively relate to SIs, whereas leadership support (LS) and shared culture (SC) negatively relate to knowledge-seeking efforts (SEs). SIs partially mediate the relationship between IM and SEs, while they fully mediate the relationship between TE and SEs. Additionally, customer orientation (CO) positively moderates the relationship between SIs and SEs.

Research limitations/implications

Data collection was completed online by relying on an existing version of the Abedi Creativity Test. The samples involve 18 companies in a High-Tech Development Zone in China, which indicates limited generalizability.

Practical implications

Effective NPD depends on successful marketing–R&D integration and knowledge exchange within the NPD team. Besides, organizations need to find ways to stimulate NPD team members’ IM and also through various ways to inspire more efforts from team members under the condition of supportive leadership and culture.


This study contributes to the knowledge management and marketing literature on NPD teamwork by examining knowledge-seeking phenomena from the perspective of the internal knowledge market and contributes to knowledge-seeking research by revealing the antecedents of SIs and SEs at both the individual and organizational level.



This work was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (71804056; 71932004), Humanities and Social Sciences Research Project of the Ministry of Education of China (18YJC630250) and China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (2018M642033).

The authors declare that they have no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.


Zhang, W., Jiang, Y., Zhou, W. and Pan, W. (2022), "Antecedents of knowledge-seeking intentions and efforts within new product development teams: empirical evidence from knowledge-based Chinese companies", Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print.



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