This paper suggests that the conventional opposition of ‘global’ versus ‘local’ strategies in knowledge management processes is not only unhelpful but misleading. It investigates the process of knowledge management, its impact on organisational structure and, in particular, its spatial aspects. Using three detailed case studies of multinational firms, it finds that knowledge configurations, which are both dynamic and ‘glocal’, are utilised to extract value from sticky local sources of knowledge and to evolve better solutions. The paper moves away from the unidirectional flow of knowledge to a picture showing conflicts between the preexisting organisational structure and the desire to manage spatial separated knowledge sources. The analysis encompasses the strategic active subsidiary as a special, possibly intermediate case, of the problems of managing spatially separate knowledge sources.
Journal of International Management – Elsevier
Published: Jan 1, 2002
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