Strategic and cultural misalignment

knowledge sharing barriers in project networks

This article draws on theories from knowledge and project management to develop an understanding of how knowledge sharing is encouraged and hindered in the context of a multifirm network assembled to execute an innovative shipbuilding project. The empirical data are based on a qualitative case study, collected from face-to-face interviews in China and Norway, with key people--a ship owner, shipbuilder, and ship technology supplier. The research indicates three interesting findings: First, differences in organizational culture (not national culture) hamper knowledge sharing. Second, a strategic misalignment made knowledge sharing difficult. Third, protecting knowledge by patenting and secrecy barely influenced the knowledge sharing processes. Based on previous research and lessons learned from case study experience, we suggest a framework to analyze challenges and links in project networks.
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