Capabilities in knowledge utilization and its effect on companies’ successfulness - A case study of Science Park Halmstad

University essay from Högskolan i Halmstad/Sektionen för ekonomi och teknik (SET); Högskolan i Halmstad/Sektionen för ekonomi och teknik (SET)

Abstract:

This thesis has the purpose of filling a gap in the existing literature regarding the knowledge utilization capabilities of different companies and how this is connected to their business achievements. Therefore we applied the theory of absorptive capacity as a company’s capability to utilize external knowledge in this study.

Building on existing literature and theories we developed an analytical model for pursuing a qualitative case study. In order to collect the empirical data we chose a sample consisting of four companies at Science Park Halmstad and one person from the incubator management.  The interviews were conducted in May 2012. To get an equal milieu for comparing the utilization capabilities of the selected companies all of them are, or had been located, within the same incubator of Science Park Halmstad. Science Park Halmstad represented the main source for the companies to make use and benefit from its environment, knowledge and education.

The results show that companies have differences in their capabilities of utilizing external source of knowledge. The companies that has achieved more and grown faster showed well developed capabilities in the four dimensions of their absorptive capacity (Acquisition, Assimilation, Transformation and Exploitation). The companies that has not yet come to grow and gotten their business running show less developed capabilities, especially within the stage of Exploitation. The growing companies managed to utilize outside sources beyond the Science Parks environment, whereas the other companies’ efforts mostly remained within the park. The results confirm and further strengthen the importance of networking among tenant companies within a Science Park. Further, the study opened up critical questions if Science Parks/incubators are able to satisfy all the specific help and education of every tenant, as they are usually positioned within a wide variety of industries.

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