Microfoundations of Organizational Ambidexterity: An Analysis of the Design, Actors, and Decisions at a Multinational Biotech Firm

Jose Balarezo, Bo Bernhard Nielsen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Organizational ambidexterity - the simultaneous pursuit of exploration and exploitation - has emerged as a powerful concept in explaining long-term organizational success and survival. Yet, little attention has been paid to the microfoundations and specific managerial actions that facilitate the implementation and operation of an ambidextrous strategy. This article explores how a market leading biotechnology firm resolves challenges associated with the simultaneous pursuit of operational efficiency and innovation. Findings provide new insights into the multifaceted aspects of organizational ambidexterity and illustrate how companies dynamically manage the contradictory demands of exploration and exploitation at different organizational levels, and the individual behaviors and decisions that enable organizational ambidexterity.
Original languageEnglish
JournalIEEE Transactions on Engineering Management
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)1477-1488
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

Published online 27 May 2020.


  • Ambidexterity
  • Exploitation
  • Exploration
  • Microfoundations
  • Scenario planning

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