“Sharing knowledge creates better knowledge” - The process of knowledge exchange in the case of Volvo Group

University essay from Göteborgs universitet/Graduate School

Abstract: Owing to the increased globalisation, Multinational Corporations (MNCs) are operating in a complex global market. This infers the importance to enable the organisation to not only transfer generated knowledge between global sites but also benefit from and develop this knowledge to be competitive. Consequently this study addresses the demand for an increasing theoretical understanding in regards to knowledge management in an international business context with special emphasis on the importance of intra-organisational relations following the idea about the transnational solution. Although knowledge transfer has been studied thoroughly over the past decades, limited attention has been given to what happens after the transfer and how new knowledge is developed. Attention is dedicated to the current static approaches of storage and transfer of knowledge, although by building on the importance of utilizing transferred knowledge this study presents a new conceptual model of how to make use of acquired knowledge, and how new knowledge is developed and exchanged within the MNC. By preforming a qualitative case study on several of Volvo Group’s sites the findings infer the importance of intra-organisational relations, meaning social interaction, social networks, and social relations, between employees in order to achieve knowledge exchange. In addition to recent research, the findings of this study further suggest there also need be management involvement and personal dedication to create these intra-organisational relations and hence facilitate intra-MNC knowledge exchange.

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