Local knowledge versus global knowledge: A trade -off between short -term balance sheet gains and long -term results in terms of proprietary knowledge

by Smith, Brian David, Ph.D., CAPELLA UNIVERSITY, 2009, 161 pages; 3339029


This research offers the opportunity to isolate business managers observing software engineers, essentially craftworkers (Ang & Slaughter, 2004), as they develop and implement software in a short-term producer strategy. As business managers and software engineers oppose each other, it becomes a matter of knowledge ownership. In the view of individuals, they claim ownership of knowledge because a person's knowledge is a part of their identity and self-worth (Dixon, 2000; Ruuska, 2005). People define their jobs by the uniqueness of their knowledge (Davenport, Eccles, & Prusak, 1992; Lucas & Ogilvie, 2006), and they take advantage of that uniqueness to elevate their careers (Jarvenpaa & Staples, 2001). Conversely, employers are still obligated to use that same knowledge for organizational gain. The arbitrage becomes apparent. The mission of this research was to discover any new methods business managers implement to capture local tacit knowledge and preserve it for institutional use. The results demonstrated business managers depend on inbound worker flows (Combes & Duranton, 2006), that is, new hires, to maintain tacit knowledge.

Ang, S., & Slaughter, S. (2001, September). Work outcomes and job design for contract versus permanent information systems professionals on software development teams. MIS Quarterly, 25(3), 321–350. Combes, P., & Duranton, G. (2006, January). Labor pooling, labor poaching, and spatial clustering. Regional Science and Urban Economics, 36(1), 1–28. Davenport, T., Eccles, R., & Prusak, L. (1992, Fall). Information politics. Sloan Management Review, 34 (1), 53–65. Dixon, N. (2000). Common knowledge: How companies thrive by sharing what they know. Boston: Harvard Business School Press. Jarvenpaa, S., & Staples, S. (2001, Summer). Exploring perceptions of organizational ownership of information and expertise. Journal of Management Information Systems, 18(1), 151–183. Ruuska, I. (2005). Social structures as communities for knowledge sharing in project-based environments. Doctoral dissertation, Helsinki University of Technology, Finland.

AdviserEdward Goldberg
Source TypeDissertation
SubjectsManagement; Information science
Publication Number3339029

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