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Opening the grey box: Social communities, knowledge and culture in acquisitions

Udo Zander and Lena Zander
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Udo Zander: Stockholm School of Economics, Sweden
Lena Zander: Uppsala University, Sweden

Journal of International Business Studies, 2010, vol. 41, issue 1, 27-37

Abstract: International acquisitions are today the most important foreign direct investment vehicle, and the ensuing integration processes are notoriously fraught with problems. We situate, discuss, and develop the main results of an early study in the knowledge-based view tradition – the award-winning Bresman, Birkinshaw, and Nobel (1999) article. To enhance and develop the central contributions regarding social communities, knowledge, and culture, we use the metaphor of unpacking the “grey box”. We argue that heavy socialization is a rational learning strategy, even if the acquirer aims at appropriating the target's technology or wishes to impose its dominant logic.

Date: 2010
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