Virtual knowledge brokers help their clients solve challenging innovation problems by leveraging the diverse knowledge basis of vast communities of solvers. Despite the increasing diffusion of virtual knowledge brokers, no efforts have been done so far to investigate the anatomy of the brokering process they follow to deliver a service to their clients. This paper analyses how virtual knowledge brokers go through the four macro-phases of the brokering process (i.e. access, learning, linking and implemenation) and points out the main differences with traditional brokers. The research is based on a multiple case study involving two Italian virtual knowledge brokers. The analysis suggests that virtual knowledge brokers are characterized by a stronger ability to access different knowledge domains in comparison with traditional knowledge brokers. However, virtual knowledge brokers are less effective in the learning and linking phases of the process, due to the distance that separates solvers and clients and the lack of communication and interaction between solvers. Starting from these insights, the ability of virtual and traditional knowledge brokers to solve different types of innovation problems is analyzed. The paper contains also a discussion of the managerial implications of this study, especially for those firms that has to select the best knowledge brokers with which to collaborate.
|Titolo:||Understanding Virtual Knowledge Brokers and their differences with Traditional Ones|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2016|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01.1 Articolo in Rivista|
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|Colombo et al.(2016)_IJIM_Understanding Virtual Knowledge Brokers[Re.Public].pdf||Pre-print||Accesso apertoVisualizza/Apri|