The study explores the soft side of knowledge transfer partnerships between universities and small to medium enterprises (SMEs), a topic which is often neglected in the knowledge management literature. The aim of this paper is to uncover the issues which emerge during formation of a partnership between heterogeneous organizations and universities. In addition, the study unfolds the criticalities of typical process improvement capability that supports the knowledge transfer partnerships between universities and SMEs. Using multiple cases, this study unravels the dominant elements that influence knowledge transfer process development, governance, implications and responsibilities. The major contribution of this study is the development of a framework based on empirical evidence using three knowledge transfer partnerships (KTPs) which illustrates the way in which soft factors in knowledge transfer partnership phases may have an impact on success or failure of university–industry collaborations for innovation.
Bibliographical noteThis is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Production Planning & Control on 30/06/2019, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/09537287.2019.1582098
- Knowledge transfer partnership
- case study
- process improvement