Kong, Eric (2011) Top management team and external knowledge acquisition for sustainability in Indian startup firms. In: IHRD 2011: Human Resource Development for Sustainability , 28-30 Sep 2011, Taipei, Taiwan.
This paper examines top management team's (TMT's) ability of acquiring external knowledge for sustainability in global startup firms in developing countries. External knowledge can include knowledge acquired from external R&D bodies, government agencies as well as alliance or contractual partners. External knowledge is particularly important for startup firms in developing countries as the firms do not usually have well developed internal knowledge management structures for knowledge creation and management. The study draws from the experience of 11 of the largest startup information technology service providers (ITSPs) in India and based on in-depth interviews. The findings suggest that TMT's ability to interact with external stakeholders is a critical element in the startup firm context in facilitating external knowledge acquisition and allowing new knowledge emerged from interactions within and across networks. Thus the development of TMT's ability to acquire external knowledge is essential to long-term organizational success. The findings will provide significant insights to startup firms emerging in other developing countries, like those in China, as global players in international business. Future research direction will be discussed.
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