Knowledge Integration in Product Development Projects

Lars Lindkvist

in The Oxford Handbook of Project Management

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780199563142
Published online May 2011 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Business and Management

Knowledge Integration in Product Development Projects

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  • Business and Management
  • Knowledge Management
  • Research Methods


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There seem to be basically two different ways of managing this problematic—one which relies on the principle of promoting “knowledge base similarity,” and a second one that favors the principle of promoting “well-connectedness of knowledge bases.” This article starts by outlining these approaches and argues that the latter one, which is associated with the idea of understanding projects as “knowledge-collectivities”, provides a fruitful point of departure for thinking about knowledge integration in many project settings. Second, it introduces a contingency framework to show how this general approach would cover a variety of knowledge integration modes and project management contexts. Third, it illustrates part of this contingency framework empirically using excerpts from two case studies taken from the literature, a mobile telephone project and a drug development project. Fourth, it specifically addresses the project management features and propose that traditional concerns regarding project goals, the view of deviations, etc. should be seen as being intertwined with the issue of knowledge integration. Finally, it suggests that continued research efforts should be devoted to advancing our ability to match a set of congruent knowledge integration and project management features to the demands of specific project contexts.

Keywords: knowledge integration; product development project; knowledge base; knowledge-collectivities; project management; project goals

Article.  8274 words. 

Subjects: Business and Management ; Knowledge Management ; Research Methods

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