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Title: Understanding knowledge creation : a study of the processes, interrelationships and contributory factors within multidisciplinary project teams
Author: Fong, Patrick Sik-wah
ISNI:       0000 0004 2748 5693
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2001
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The growing importance of introducing unique products to the market has made firms more conscious of organisational knowledge creation. Knowledge creation is recognised to be important in creating and sustaining competitive advantage as well as in meeting organisational goals in modem societies. Multidisciplinary project teams have gained increased popularity owing to their diversity of knowledge resources, drawing upon different organisational functions and professional disciplines. They are viewed as having high potential to innovate due to their heterogeneous nature. Their activities are fundamental to learning within wider organisations, and not just in the form of temporarily disconnected project units. The research empirically investigates the creation of new technical knowledge and develops a conceptual model of the knowledge creation process. It broadens the organisational knowledge creation theory developed by Nonaka and Takeuchi (1995), into the area of multidisciplinary project teams. This research focuses on three major aspects: the key processes that underlie knowledge creation within multidisciplinary project teams, the interrelationships between these key knowledge creation processes and the factors that influence the processes of multidisciplinary knowledge creation. Empirical evidence was collected from a large property development company, using a qualitative case study approach. Two multidisciplinary project teams, working on infra-structural and residential developments, were selected for the in-depth study. The research reviews existing theories of organisational knowledge creation and team processes. It seeks to contribute to the theory of knowledge creation within multidisciplinary project teams through technological innovation or problem solving, by providing an explorative account supported by empirical evidence. Secondly, it contributes to the development of the knowledge creation theory within multidisciplinary project teams by adopting a social construction perspective and by focusing on its processes and their interrelationship. In addition, factors are identified that affect these processes. The proposed framework provides not only for future research to systematically examine and test knowledge creation processes against different backgrounds, but it also allows management to continuously anticipate and support knowledge creation activities related to the successful management of collaborative team projects within their particular organisations.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: HD28 Management. Industrial Management