Learning-By-Being-Acquired: Post-Acquisition R&D Team Reorganization and Knowledge Transfer

Massimo G. Colombo, Solon Moreira, Larissa Rabbiosi

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperResearchpeer-review


    In this paper we study post-acquisition integration in terms of R&D team reorganization—i.e., the creation of new teams with both inventors of the acquiring and acquired firms—and assess its impact on knowledge transfer in the period that follows the acquisition. Drawing on social identity and self-categorization theories, we argue that R&D team reorganization increases the acquired inventors’ use of the prior stock of technological knowledge of the acquiring firm after the acquisition. Furthermore, this effect is enhanced if acquired inventors have higher innovation ability relative to their acquiring peers but is weakened for acquired inventors with high preacquisition ingroup collaborative strength. We construct a sample of 3,625 acquired inventors implementing the coarsened exact matching (CEM) technique and empirically test our arguments applying a difference-in-differences setup in a longitudinal data setting. We find general support for the hypothesized relationships. This study shows that the social identity perspective helps complementing predictions from the coordination-autonomy perspective.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication date2016
    Number of pages39
    Publication statusPublished - 2016
    EventThe DRUID 20th Anniversary Conference 2016: Innovation and the Dynamics of Change - Copenhagen Business School, København, Denmark
    Duration: 13 Jun 201615 Jun 2016
    Conference number: 38


    ConferenceThe DRUID 20th Anniversary Conference 2016
    LocationCopenhagen Business School
    OtherThe DRUID Society Conference 2016
    SponsorCopenhagen Business School
    Internet address

    Bibliographical note

    This paper was also presented at the Academy of Management Annual Meeting 2016, August 5-9. Anaheim, USA

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