Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore how the dynamics of national and organizational culture influence an organization operating in a cross-cultural business environment and how the company benefits from cultural differences in terms of competitive advantage, high performance, innovation, and leadership. Some scholars (for example Jing et al., 2014; Chen et al., 2010; Qin et al., 2008; Bhagat et al., 2002) argued that national culture acts as a significant barrier to knowledge transfer. However, the integration and learning from other cultures over time lead MNCs to manage the dynamic balancing and integration of the knowledge portfolio. Design/methodology/approach – We adopted an instrumental case study methodology based on multiple sources of evidence: interviews, field observations, and internal document analysis. In particular, we focused on a holistic single case study, the Generali Group. We performed content analysis of the evidence collected by using qualitative coding techniques (Strauss and Corbin, 1998). The data collected were transcribed into the Nvivo software to provide a basis for data analysis. The key themes that emerged from the content analysis were the following: (i) sticky knowledge; (ii) knowledge facilitation; (iii) improving organizational performance. Originality/value – This paper represents a first step to move away from rather simplistic and static interpretations of national culture, and to investigate the complexity of value orientations from a more critical and dialogic standpoint. In this sense, the paper tried to emphasize the all-dimensional learning of cultures and its impact on the dynamic portfolio of available values of a specific organization. Practical implications – The paper provides managers with guidelines on how to better understand the role played by national culture on their organizational and knowledge management strategies and practices.

Cultural Dynamics and their Impact on Knowledge and Organizational Strategies of Multinational Corporations

Rubens Pauluzzo
;
Maria Rosita Cagnina
2016

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore how the dynamics of national and organizational culture influence an organization operating in a cross-cultural business environment and how the company benefits from cultural differences in terms of competitive advantage, high performance, innovation, and leadership. Some scholars (for example Jing et al., 2014; Chen et al., 2010; Qin et al., 2008; Bhagat et al., 2002) argued that national culture acts as a significant barrier to knowledge transfer. However, the integration and learning from other cultures over time lead MNCs to manage the dynamic balancing and integration of the knowledge portfolio. Design/methodology/approach – We adopted an instrumental case study methodology based on multiple sources of evidence: interviews, field observations, and internal document analysis. In particular, we focused on a holistic single case study, the Generali Group. We performed content analysis of the evidence collected by using qualitative coding techniques (Strauss and Corbin, 1998). The data collected were transcribed into the Nvivo software to provide a basis for data analysis. The key themes that emerged from the content analysis were the following: (i) sticky knowledge; (ii) knowledge facilitation; (iii) improving organizational performance. Originality/value – This paper represents a first step to move away from rather simplistic and static interpretations of national culture, and to investigate the complexity of value orientations from a more critical and dialogic standpoint. In this sense, the paper tried to emphasize the all-dimensional learning of cultures and its impact on the dynamic portfolio of available values of a specific organization. Practical implications – The paper provides managers with guidelines on how to better understand the role played by national culture on their organizational and knowledge management strategies and practices.
978-88-96687-09-3
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11390/1120713
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