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Generating innovation opportunities: how to explore and absorb customer knowledge

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This study examines how a company can generate innovation
opportunities by exploring and absorbing customer knowledge. The exploration
can be performed via an in-depth or broad search for resources beyond
organisational boundaries. Salespeople are an essential channel for an in-depth
search in relation to customers, since salespeople possess rich knowledge of the
customers. In order to be useful, such knowledge has to be absorbed in the
company. Most of the literature on absorptive capacity has focused on R&D,
while less focus has been placed on studying the role of individuals in the
development of integrative practices. This paper demonstrates how a
community of practice can enable organisations to move from potential
absorptive capacity to realised absorptive capacity.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Technology Management
Pages (from-to)172-187
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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