Knowledge creation. The ongoing search for strategic renewal

Autores UPV
Revista Industrial Management & Data Systems


Purpose ¿ The purpose of this paper is to analyse how changes in a set of structural design variables (i.e. liaison position, networked design, innovation teams and work teams) affect the creation of new knowledge within organizations. The enablers intention, autonomy, fluctuation and creative chaos, redundancy, variety, and trust and commitment, taken from Nonaka¿s framework, are used as intermediate variables. Design/methodology/approach ¿ A sample of 167 large Spanish companies was used to empirically test a general relational model. Findings ¿ The analysis yielded two main conclusions. First, the relationship between structural variables and enablers, and, second, the relationship of enablers with knowledge creation emerged as highly relevant for knowledge creation in organizations. Research limitations/implications ¿ A major limitation of this study was the relatively small number of variables used to define organizational structure. In reality, a large number of variables combine to create organizational structure, yet this study only included four: liaison position, networked design, innovation teams and work teams. A further limitation is the importance of the organizational context itself, which was not addressed in this study. Practical implications ¿ This research has yielded findings that can help firms to understand and appreciate the changes that may occur in certain organizational design variables that affect knowledge creation. Equally, this research shows that knowledge creation has the potential to act as a catalyst for innovation, and may consequently drive change within the firm. Originality/value ¿ Despite a long tradition of research into organizations and the ways in which these entities create knowledge, the literature requires enhancing through the publication of articles that provide a deeper knowledge of the context and tools that aid knowledge creation. The novel approach adopted in the current study verified whether certain variables related to organization design (i.e. liaison positions, networked design, innovation teams and work teams) exert a relevant influence on knowledge creation.