Knowledge transfer exchange and dynamic Guanxi in Chinese Universities

Antonio Padilla-Meléndez, Zhenxing Li

Abstract


This paper investigates the relevance of guanxi (???as a cultural factor in Knowledge Transfer Exchange (KTE) in the Chinese University-Industry relationship context. Adopting a qualitative case-study approach, with data from fieldwork fifty interviews this work brings fresh view on the role of social networks as a cultural value in universities’ researchers engagement in KTE activities. In addition, this paper breaks the traditional linear view toward guanxi. Instead, it adopts a dynamic, dialectical, and holistic perspective towards the role of guanxi in KTE processes in the context of Chinese universities. Furthermore, it has been found that during the KTE process, guanxi networks should be balanced with the appropriate infrastructure, qualified staffs, and financial investment to obtain successful outcomes. This study enriches the existing literature on the determinants which affect KTE researcher engagement by highlighting the role of guanxi as a cultural factor. 


Keywords


Guanxi, Knowledge Transfer Exchange, Universities, China.

Full Text:

PDF

References


Ackroyd S and Hughes JA (1981) Data collection in context. New York: Longman.

Arvanitis S, Kubli U and Woerter M (2008) University-industry knowledge and technology transfer in Switzerland: What university scientists think about co-operation with private enterprises. Research Policy 37(10): 1865–1883.

Audretsch DB, Lehmann EE and Wright M (2014) Technology transfer in a global economy. Journal of Technology Transfer 39(3): 301–312.

Bekkers R and Bodas Freitas I. M (2008) Analysing knowledge transfer channels between universities and industry: To what degree do sectors also matter?' Research Policy 37(10): 1837–1853.

Bruneel J, D’Este P and Salter A (2010) Investigating the factors that diminish the barriers to university-industry collaboration. Research Policy 39(7): 858–868.

Buckley PJ, Clegg J and Tan H (2006) Cultural awareness in knowledge transfer to China-The role of guanxi and mianzi. Journal of World Business 41(3): 275–288.

Chen EY (1994) The evolution of university-industry technology transfer in Hong Kong. Technovation 14(7): 449–459.

Chen X. P and Peng, S (2008) Guanxi dynamics: Shifts in the closeness of ties between Chinese coworkers. Management and Organization Review 4): 63–80.

D’Este, P and Patel, P (2007) University-industry linkages in the UK: What are the factors underlying the variety of interactions with industry?' Research Policy 36(9): 1295–1313.

Davies H, Leung TK, Luk ST and Wong Y (1995) The benefits of “Guanxi”: The value of relationships in developing the Chinese market. Industrial Marketing Management 24(3): 207–214.

De Long DW and Fahey L (2000) Diagnosing cultural barriers to knowledge management. Academy of Management Perspectives 14(4): 113–127.

Decter M, Bennett D and Leseure M (2007) University to business technology transfer-UK and USA comparisons. Technovation 27(3): 145–155.

Fan Y (2002) Questioning guanxi: Definition, classification and implications. International Business Review 11(5): 543–561.

Faure GO and Fang T (2008) Changing Chinese values: Keeping up with paradoxes. International Business Review 17(2): 194–207.

Gao H, Ballantyne D and Knigh JG (2010) Paradoxes and guanxi dilemmas in emerging Chinese-Western intercultural relationships. Industrial Marketing Management 39(2): 264–272.

Gordon I and Jack S (2010) HEI engagement with SMEs: developing social capital. International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research 16(6): 517–539.

Harmon B, Ardishvili A, Cardozo R, Elder T, Leuthold J, Parshall J and Smith D (1997) Mapping the university technology transfer process. Journal of Business Venturing 12(6): 423–434.

Hong J, Heikkinen J and Blomqvist K (2010) Culture and knowledge co-creation in R&D collaboration between MNCs and Chinese Universities. Knowlege and Process Management 17(2): 62–73.

Hwang K (1987) Face and Favor?: The Chinese Power Game. American Journal of Sociology 92(4): 944–974.

Ko WW and Liu G (2016) A typology of guanxi-based governance mechanisms for knowledge transfer in business networks of Chinese small and medium-sized enterprises. Group & Organization Management. Published online before print February 3, 2016.

Landry R, Amara N and Ouimet M (2007) Determinants of knowledge transfer: Evidence from Canadian university researchers in natural sciences and engineering. Journal of Technology Transfer 32(6): 561–592.

Lee J and Win HN (2004) Technology transfer between university research centers and industry in Singapore. Technovation 24(5): 433–442.

Leung TKP, Chan R.Y.K, Lai K. H and Ngai EWT (2011) An examination of the influence of guanxi and xinren (utilization of personal trust) on negotiation outcome in China: An old friend approach. Industrial Marketing Management 40(7): 1193–1205.

Link AN, Siegel DS and Bozeman B (2007) An empirical analysis of the propensity of academics to engage in informal university technology transfer. Industrial and Corporate Change 16(4): 641–655.

Liu H and Jiang Y (2001) Technology transfer from higher education institutions to industry in China: Nature and implications. Technovation 21(3): 175–188.

Lu L (2012) Guanxi and renqing: the roles of two cultural norms in Chinese business. International Journal of Management 29(2): 466–476.

Luk STK, Fullgrabe L and Li SCY (1999) Managing Direct Selling Activities in China. Journal of Business Research 45(3): 257–266.

Luo Y and Chen M (1997) Does guanxi influence firm performance?' Asia Pacific Journal of Management 14): 1–16.

Luo Y, Huang Y and Wang SL (2012) Guanxi and organizational performance: A meta-analysis. Management and Organization Review 8(1): 139–172.

Marková I and Gillespie, A (2008) Trust and distrust: Sociocultural perspectives. USA: Information Age Publishing Inc.

Miesing P, Kriger MP and Slough N (2007) Towards a model of effective knowledge transfer within transnationals: The case of Chinese foreign invested enterprises. Journal of Technology Transfer 32(1–2): 109–122.

Mitton C, Adair CE, McKenzie E, Patten SB and Perry BW (2007) Knowledge transfer and exchange: Review and synthesis of the literature. The Milbank Quarterly 85(4): 729–768.

Morgan RM and Hunt SD (1994) The commitment-trust theory of relations. Journal of Marketing 58(3): 20–38.

Padilla-Meléndez A, Del Aguila-Obra AR and Lockett N (2013) Shifting sands: Regional perspectives on the role of social capital in supporting open innovation through knowledge transfer and exchange with small and medium-sized enterprises. International Small Business Journal 31(3): 296–318.

Padilla-Meléndez A and Garrido-Moreno A (2012) Open innovation in universities: What motivates researchers to engage in knowledge transfer exchange?' International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research 18(4): 417–439.

Park SH and Luo Y (2001) Guanxi and organizational dynamics: Organizational networking in Chinese firms. Strategic Management Journal 22): 455–477.

Ramasamy B, Goh KW and Yeung MCH (2006) Is Guanxi (relationship) a bridge to knowledge transfer?' Journal of Business Research 59(1): 130–139.

Shaalan AS, Reast J, Johnson D and Tourky ME (2013) East meets West: Toward a theoretical model linking guanxi and relationship marketing. Journal of Business Research 66(12): 2515–2521.

Shi G, Shi Y, Chan AKK, Liu, MT and Fam KS (2011) The role of renqing in mediating customer relationship investment and relationship commitment in China. Industrial Marketing Management 40(4): 496–502.

Siu WS and Kirby DA (1995) Marketing in Chinese small business: Tentative theory. Journal of Enterprising Culture 3(3): 309–342.

Tung RL (1994) Human resource issues and technology transfer. The International Journal of Human Resource 5 No 4): 807–825.

Wang G and Hu B (2010) The study of the influence of personal relationship on the knowledge transfer: The role of xinren. Research on Financial and Economic Issues 3, 103–108.

Wang Y, Huang J, Chen Y, Pan X and Chen J (2013) Have Chinese universities embraced their third mission?? New insight from a business perspective. Scientometrics(97): 207–222.

Wong M (2007) Guanxi and its role in business. Chinese Management Studies 1(4): 257–276.

Yeung IYM and Tung RL (1996) Achieving business success in Confucian societies: The importance of guanxi (connections). Organizational Dynamics 25(2, 54–65.

Yuan Y (2009) Review on knowledge transfer research of university in China. Journal of Modern Information 29(11): 221–224.

Zhou F and Zhu X (2008) University technology transfer in China: Do the resources matter?' Journal of American Academy of Business 13(1): 195–190.

Zhou C and Guang H (2007) Gift giving culture in China and its cultural values. Intercultural Communication Studies 16(2): 81–93.






Copyright (c) 2017 Tourism & Management Studies

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.