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Intergenerational knowledge sharing in family firms: Case-based evidence from the New Zealand wine industry

Paul Woodfield and Kenneth Husted

Journal of Family Business Strategy, 2017, vol. 8, issue 1, 57-69

Abstract: This paper examines intergenerational knowledge sharing within family firms in traditional industries. We position our analysis against the background of the knowledge-based view of the firm and utilize knowledge creation theory and perspectives on knowledge sharing behavior to analyse how knowledge is shared in an organization. We employ a multiple case study approach and use the New Zealand wine industry as the context of our analysis. Our study extends family business and knowledge sharing literature by challenging traditional views of incumbent-successor relationships. We reason that family business literature is sympathetic to the senior generation nurturing the next generation while leaving a gap in our understanding of how the next generation contributes knowledge to the firm. We suggest that the knowledge bases of the senior and next generation are different in terms of how they are generated and the relative weight of tacit and explicit knowledge they contain. We also argue that knowledge sharing in family firms is bidirectional leading to innovative outcomes and change.

Keywords: Family business; Intergenerational knowledge sharing; Bidirectional knowledge sharing; Knowledge-based view; Wine industry; New Zealand (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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