یادگیری بین شرکا در زنجیره عرضه جهانی: درس از نوو نوردیسک
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|13081||2000||12 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : European Journal of Purchasing & Supply Management, Volume 6, Issue 2, June 2000, Pages 105–116
The interdependent forces of global competition and technological development have fundamentally changed the way in which firms define the boundaries of their own activities and those that are left to subcontractors. Joint skill development and inter-partner learning have become important in the global sourcing policies of firms. The purpose of the present paper is to develop a conceptual model for understanding inter-partner learning processes in international subcontractor relationships. We see this as a process of developing shared skills. Furthermore, we demonstrate how inter-partner diversity impedes this process. Because of a lack of previous research in this area, a reconstructive approach is taken, which involves extending the conceptual framework through a case study.
The interdependent forces of global competition and technological development have fundamentally changed the way in which firms define the boundaries of their own activities and those that are left to subcontractors. Joint skill development and inter-partner learning have become important in the marketing and sourcing policies of subcontracted goods. In the new realities of the economy, outsourcing practices are undergoing substantial changes. Firms realize that they cannot efficiently keep pace with the growing number of relevant technical fields. In order to survive in the race for innovation and technological flexibility, firms choose to concentrate on core competencies and collaborate with external partners in order to develop shared technological capabilities (Imai and Baba, 1989; Nooteboom, 1992). Strategic collaboration in developing new capabilities means pooling of resources. This may lever resource economies of scale and scope which otherwise may be unattainable for the partners, individually. Also, sourcing activities are becoming increasingly global in scope. In search of competitive advantage vis a vis local rivals, contractors increasingly look for excellent subcontractors beyond their domestic markets. Hence, knowledge-intensive international subcontracting has become an important part of the firms’ sourcing activities (Andersen and Christensen, 1998). Strategic collaboration with subcontractors may be one way of enhancing risk-sharing and providing synergy effects through the combination of contractors and subcontractors’ distinctive skills. The virtues of organizational partnering in the international marketplace have been outlined in the literature (e.g., Kanter, 1994; Burton, 1995). However, processes of inter-organizational learning also entail increase in social complexity (Adler and Graham, 1989). Adding an international dimension only magnifies the differences as more sources of diversity are introduced (e.g., cultural and spatial related). Thus alliances between organizations often fail because of inter-partner diversity (Bleeke and Ernst, 1991; Fedor and Werther, 1996; Parkhe, 1991). The purpose of the present contribution is to develop a model for understanding the processes influencing inter-partner learning in international subcontractor relationships. Our model, views shared skill development as a crucial factor in understanding the management of this process. Moreover, we seek to demonstrate how inter-partner diversity impedes this process. We also discuss a number of mechanisms through which the partners may cope with problems of inter-partner diversity in collaborative learning. Because of a lack of previous research in this area, a reconstructive approach is taken toward this issue. Instead of interpretative approaches, we follow a positivistic approach to field research that includes both literature studies and field observations. We use an argumentative interaction between field studies and existing theory to reconstruct theory (Burawoy, 1991). We develop a conceptual framework and subsequently use a pilot case study involving a Danish MNC and a Japanese subcontractor in order to further examine the implications of the model.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
As apparent from this analysis, it is possible from the model to identify a set of critical factors for understanding the chain of events in a case of subcontractor relationships between diverse partners. The virtue of the model is, that the complexity of studying such relationships in vivo may be reduced, as the forces may be isolated and studied in detail through an analytical lens, hence reducing the analytical complexity of the case. In the model, we propose the view that inter-organizational learning processes must be seen as a task of both managing shared skill development and skill boundary management. The importance of managing skill boundaries in the inter-partner learning process, including absorptive and communicative capacities, is confirmed by the case study presented. The conversion mechanisms through which learning at the personal level are commuted and adopted at the organizational level are a central issue for learning in supply chains. When these processes are not carefully managed, long-standing and cumulative efforts of trust-building are much too easily destroyed. As these efforts are resource consuming, they represent considerable value for both firms, and need to be protected from errors caused by a lack of internal communication. Further research is needed in order to develop the model. First of all, additional case studies which involve both contractors and subcontractors may lead to development and refinement of the theoretical lens presented in this contribution. For instance, detailed studies of such contractor–subcontractor dyads may help to identify some of the interactive and dynamic effects of skill boundary management and inter-firm diversity on processes of shared skill development. Also, such case studies may hold promise for more normative oriented theorizing as they can reveal some of the techniques used by firms in order to submerge such divergencies and continue collaborative efforts.